Seroprevalence and Risk Factors of Hepatitis C Virus among Juveniles in Correctional Center in Isfahan, Iran

Zary Nokhodian, Behrooz Ataei, Nazila Kassaian, Majid Yaran, Razieh Hassannejad, Peyman Adibi


Background and Aims: Juveniles in custody are affected by blood borne viruses due to high rates of risk behaviors. Therefore, they have a disproportionate burden of infectious diseases, such as hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. The purpose of the present study was to determine prevalence and associated characteristics of hepatitis C infection in inmates of a correctional center in Isfahan, Iran.

Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study of HCV infection in 160 youths, who were admitted to correctional center in Isfahan during 2008-2009. Subjects were asked questions regarding behaviors that might put them at high risk for acquiring HCV and blood was drawn for this test. Sera were analyzed for HCV Ab and RIBA test was performed on antibody-positive HCV. We used Chi-square test and logistic regression model to analyze data and P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.

Results: A total of 160 young prisoners (147 boys and 13 girls) were studied. The mean age of the inmates was 16.59 ± 1.24 year. A history of intravenous drug addiction was reported in 3.8% of them. HCV infection was detected in 7 (4.4%) subjects. This study revealed that history of IDU was the main risk factor for HCV (OR, 134.44; 95% confidence interval [CI], 7.29-2481.03).

Conclusion: To prevent HCV transmission, proper drug prevention educations should be performed in young age prisoners.

 Keywords: Correctional center, HCV, Isfahan

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