Journal of Antivirals & Antiretrovirals

Journal of Antivirals & Antiretrovirals
Open Access

ISSN: 1948-5964

+44 1300 500008


Current Prevalence of HBV and HCV Seropositivity: The Initiative for Attentiveness and Deterrence of Viral Hepatitis in the Qassim Region of Saudi Arabia

Ahmed N Aljarbou

Background: The spread of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) continues at an alarming
worldwide. This pandemic has created a dramatic, often overwhelming, impact on many countries including Saudi Arabia. The present study aimed to identify the prevalence of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) between 2008 and 2010 among local populations of Qassim region in Saudi Arabia.
Methods: Serum samples were obtained from 8,082 subjects (4,041 males, 4,041 females), aged 20 years and over, who visited King Fahad Hospital (Buraidah, Qassim) between years 2008 and 2011, before getting married.
Results: In 2008, hepatitis B virus surface antigen (HBsAg) were detected in 21/2918 (0.7%) subjects and
antibodies to hepatitis C virus (anti-HCV) were detected in 4/2918 (0.1%) subjects. In 2009, HBV and HCV positives raised to 1.5% (38/2528) and 3% (8/2528) respectively. In 2010, the incidence of HBV was 54/2636 (2.04%), while the HCV was found 22/2636 (0.83%). Keeping the verity of increasing prevalence of HBV and HCV for 2008-2010 into consideration, it is predicted to substantial increase in both HBV and HCV infection rates in next three years. As it is estimated, 12.5% male, 5.1% female and 17.7% male, 5.2% female would be infected with HBV and HCV respectively by the year 2013.
Conclusions: However, these results are restricted to a limited population of young couples above 20 years
who were willing to get married, but reflect the current status within the Qassim region in Saudi Arabia. Moreover, this emphasizes the urgency of further cross-sectional studies of HBV and HCV in the region and as well as vaccination programs against HBV in order to reduce the prevalence of these infections. The control and prevention of HBV and HCV infections require continuous monitoring as well as evaluation of prevention and surveillance strategies.