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J.J. Raabe^{1}, J.M. Perarnau^{1}, J.F. Viel^{2}, C. Jeanvoine^{1}, S. Mrani-Alaoui^{1}. ^{1}Service de Medecine B, Centre Hospitalier Regional de Metz,^{2} Department d'information Medicale, Centre Hospitalo-Universitaire de Besancon, France

commonly recognised risk-factors have been shown to account for only 50%-60% of hepatitis C cases.

to assess other risk factors associated with hepatitis C. Patients and methods: a case-control study was carried out. The cases were 100 HCV positive (+ve) subjects seen at an outpatient clinic. The controls were 100 sex and age +/-3 matched anti HCV negative (-ve) subjects seen in a National Health Insurance check-up Center. There were 68 males and 38 females in each group with a mean age of 46+/- 1.3 year. All serums were tested by 2nd generation ELISA. Anti HCV +ve patients were further tested by 2nd generation RIBA. An interviewer-administered questionnaire on possible risk factors was given to both anti HCV positive subjects and controls. Conditional logistic regressions were performed. The crude Odds Ratios (O.R.) were calculated by univariate analysis but, to identify variables that were independently associated with HCV infection, the adjusted O.R. were calculated by multivariate analysis.

the risk factors evaluated by univariate analysis (O.R.-confidence interval 95%) are: place of birth out of France: 3.33 (1.32-8.39), blood transfusions: 5.71 (2.53-12.9), history of IV drug use: 14 (1.8-100), digestive endoscopy: 3.2 (1.56-6.57), tattoos: 7 (0.839-58.4), ear piercing: 3.33 (0.903-12.3), number of hospitalisations : 11 (1.38-87.4), sexual activity with an at-risk partner: 5.25 (1.78-15.5). The adjusted O.R. were calculated and identified variables that were independently associated with HCV infection are: history of IV drug use: 18.8 (1.26-280), blood transfusion: 8.33 (2.80-24.8), place of birth out of France: 5.04 (1.44-17.6), hospitalisations in a medical unit: 3.83 (1.47-9.96), hospitalisations in a surgical unit: 3.33 (1.10-10). Conclusions: Although HCV infection is most strongly correlated with know risk-factors (blood transfusions, IV drug use), other risk factors also play a role in HCV transmission.

Source: American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases - 1996 Annual Meeting

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