PREVALENCE OF HEPATITIS B VIRUS SURFACE ANTIGEN IN PREGNANT WOMEN ATTENDING A PRIVATE AND GOVERNMENT HOSPITAL IN KRISHNAGIRI (DT)S. PARANJOTHI AND H.V IJAYARANI
The prevalence of hepatitis B virus (HBV) carrier and infectivity status among 762 pregnant women in Krishnagiri district, TamilNadu, were determined through random testing of volunteers antenatal clinics through different hospitals with in the krishnagiri district. HBV carriage status was determined by the presence of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg). Repeated reactive samples were confirmed by Enzyme linked immunoabsorbant assay (ELISA) kit (Span Diagnostic Ltd, India).Maternal HBV infectivity status was determined by testing all HBsAg positive samples for the presence of hepatitis Be Ag. Overall 39(5%) pregnant women were identified as positive for HBV and 15 of the 39 (38%) pregnant women identified as HBV carrier tested for HBeAg. Hence 28% of the entire study population was found to have high viral replication as well as high risk of transmitting HBV to their neonates. The frequency of HBV carriers vary with age, educational factors, and marital status. The study demonstrates the endemicity of HBV infection by both vertical and horizontal means of transmission. Free screening and immunization of all pregnant women and infants should be incorporated in the antenatal and postnatal programmes in hospital for the eradication of HBV infection among pregnant women.
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