Prevalence of hepatitis A virus among Saudi Arabian children: A community-based study.

Abstract:

:HAV is endemic in Saudi Arabia, with about 90% of the adult population having positive anti-HAV. A population-based survey of hepatitis B virus markers provided an opportunity to determine the age-related prevalence of anti-HAV among Saudi children and examine some of the factors that influence its transmission in the community. The overall prevalence of anti-HAV is 52.4% of 4375 children tested. There was no significant difference in HAV prevalence between males and females (51.3% vs 53.5%). The age-specific rates, which were similar in both sexes, indicated the lowest rate in infants with a steady increase in the older age group. There was a marked regional variation in anti-HAV prevalence, the Eastern region showing the lowest prevalence (38.4%), while the Northwestern region showed the highest prevalence (67%). In nearly all the regions, rural inhabitants had a higher prevalence than urban residents. Socioeconomic factors had a significant correlation with the prevalence of anti-HAV, with the level of education of parents having the strongest influence on HAV prevalence. The high overall HAV prevalence in children confirms that Saudi Arabia is endemic for HAV infection, despite the recent improvement in the socioeconomic standards of its population. The pattern of HAV may be changing in Saudi Arabia as the prevalence has dropped in the Central province compared to previous reports. The need for the introduction of hepatitis A vaccination will be determined in the future definition of HAV epidemiology in Saudi Arabia.

journal_name

Ann Saudi Med

journal_title

Annals of Saudi medicine

authors

Al Rashed RS

doi

10.5144/0256-4947.1997.200

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

1997-03-01 00:00:00

pages

200-3

issue

2

eissn

0256-4947

issn

0975-4466

pii

17-200

journal_volume

17

pub_type

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