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Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia

Print version ISSN 1415-790X


COELHO, Harnoldo Colares et al. Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B virus infection in a Brazilian jail. Rev. bras. epidemiol. [online]. 2009, vol.12, n.2, pp. 124-131. ISSN 1415-790X.

This survey aimed to estimate the prevalence of HBV serological markers and risk factors for this infection in male inmates at the Penitentiary of Ribeirão Preto, State of São Paulo, Brazil. Out of 1030 inmates, a simple random sample of 333 participants answered a questionnaire and had blood samples collected, from May to August 2003. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was used to diagnose HBV infection (HBsAg, anti-HBsAg, and total anti-HBc). The overall prevalence for HBV markers in inmates was 19.5% (CI95%: 15.2 - 23.8). The participants' mean age was 30.1 years. In univariate analysis, HBV infection was associated with age > 30 years (p<0.001), previous injecting drug use (p<0.001) and previous sharing of needles (p<0.001). In a logistic regression multivariate model, HBV infection was associated with age > 30 years (OR = 3.3; CI95%: 1.8 - 6.1) and previous injecting drug use (OR = 2.7; CI95%: 1.9 - 6.4). HBV infection on prisons represents a major health problem, mainly associated with age over 30 years and previous injecting drug use.

Keywords : Hepatitis B; Prisons; Prevalence; Risk fators.

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