Original article / research
Knowledge and Practice of Hepatitis B and C Prevention among Seropositive and Seronegative Prospective Blood Donors in a Tertiary Care Hospital in Eastern Nigeria
Medical Doctor, Department of Medical Microbiology, College of Medicine, Enugu
State University, Enugu, Nigeria.
Introduction: Hepatitis B and C infections are endemic in Nigeria and the major causes of chronic liver diseases, including hepatocellular carcinoma. One of the major routes of transmission is by transfusion of infected blood or blood products. Awareness of the disease is important, and this study seeks to compare the knowledge and practice of the disease among the seropositive and seronegative prospective blood donors.
Aim: To assess the difference in the level of knowledge and preventive practice of blood borne hepatitis among hepatitis B and hepatitis C seropositive and seronegative prospective blood donors.
Materials and Methods: The present study was a descriptive survey carried out between June 2019 to January 2020 in the Blood Donor’s Department of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu, Nigeria. A pretested self/interviewer's administered questionnaire was used to assess the knowledge and practice among 100 hepatitis B and hepatitis C seropositive and 305 seronegative prospective blood donors. The hepatitis B and C seropositive subjects were screened using Enzyme Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) technique. The findings and scores were analysed using IBM Corporation 2019 Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software version 21.0.
Results: Total of 305 respondents were seronegative while 82 and 18 were hepatitis B and C seropositive, respectively. The mean age of the study participants was 27.78±7.17 years, whereas it was 28.09±6.36 years and 27.46±7.968 years among seropositive and seronegative respondents, respectively. In the study, 98 (98%) males and 2 (2%) females were in the seropositive group while, 268 (87.9%) males and 37 (12.1%) females were in seronegative group. The overall knowledge score and practice score were 56.3% and 28.1%, respectively. In the seropositive group, the average knowledge score was 27.3% and the average practice score was 17%. While in the seronegative group, the average knowledge score was 65.7% and the average score on practice score was 31.8%. There was a significant association between seropositive and being a male (p-value=0.001), less educated (p-value=0.002), currently unmarried (p-value=0.029), knowledge above average (p-value=0.001), and practice below average (p=0.002). None of the respondents had hepatitis B vaccination.
Conclusion: Based on the results obtained from the present study, it is evident that the level of knowledge and practice among the seropositive respondent is significantly low when compared with the seronegative groups. There is a need for a serious awareness campaign on the transmission and prevention of hepatitis B and C, and the possibility of extending hepatitis B immunisation coverage in the country owing to the increasing burden of the disease.
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