Hepatitis C virus seroprevalence in multi-transfused patients in Colombia

Mauricio Beltrân, Maria Cristina Navas, Fernando De La Hoz, Maria Mercedes Muñoz, Sergio Jaramillo, Cecilia Estrada, Lucia Del Pilar Cortés, María Patricia Arbelâez, Jorge Donado, Gloria Barco, Martha Luna, Gustavo Adolfo Uribe, Amalia De Maldonado, Juan Carlos Restrepo, Gonzalo Correa, Paula Borda, Gloria Rey, Marlen De Neira, Angela Estrada, Sandra YepesOscar Beltrân, Javier Pacheco, Iván Villegas, Jorge Boshell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle in an indexed scientific journalpeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Background: Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) infection is a public health problem worldwide, with particular relevance in multi-transfusedpatients given that HCV is principally transmitted by exposure to infected blood. Study design: Between February and September 2003 a cross-sectional study was carried out in four hospital centres in Bogotá and Medellin, Colombia, to determine the risk factors for HCV infection in 500 multi-transfused patients. Results: The study population was distributed in five groups: haemophilia, haemodyalsis, acute bleeding, ontological illnesses and sickle cell disease or thalassemia. Serum samples from patients were tested for HCV antibodies (Asxym™, Abbott). An overall prevalence (9.0%; 95% confidence interval (CI): 6.4-11.6) (45/500) of HCV infection was found. Anti-HCV antibodies were detected in 32.2% of patients with haemophilia, 6.1% of patients undergoing haemodialysis, 7.1% of patients with sickle cell disease or thalassemia, 2.6% of patients with acute bleeding and 3.4% of patients with ontological or hematological diseases. The main risk factors associated with infection by HCV were: to be hemophilic (odds ratio, OR = 18.03; 95% Cl: 3.96-114.17), havingreceived transfusions before 1995 (OR = 12.27; 95% Cl: 5.57-27.69), and having received more than 48 units of blood components (OR = 6.08; 95% CI: 3.06-12.1). In the multivariate analysis, only the year of transfusions (before 1995) remained significantly associated with risk of infection by HCV. Conclusions: The data show a 3-fold reduction in the infection risk between 1993 and 1995, when the serological screening for HCVin blood donors was being introduced. A reduction greater than 90% was achieved by 1995 when the screening coverage reached 99%.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S33-S38
JournalJournal of Clinical Virology
Issue numberSUPPL. 2
StatePublished - Dec 2005
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors wish to thank Drs. Joss Ramlro Cruz and Serge Xueref for crmcal reading of the manuscript and helpful dlscuss~on. This study was supported by PAHO thanks to a grant from by the Bill and Mehnda Gates Foundation.


  • Colombia
  • HCV
  • Multi-transfused patients
  • Prevalence


Dive into the research topics of 'Hepatitis C virus seroprevalence in multi-transfused patients in Colombia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this