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Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health 2004;37(3): 253-259.
A seroepidemiological Study of Hepatitis B and C Virus (HBV and HCV) Infections in the Young Population in parts of Busan, Korea.
Young Hee Ju, Hai Rim Shin, Jin Kyoung Oh, Dong IL Kim, Duk Hee Lee, Byeong Kweon Kim, Jung Il Kim, Kap Yeol Jung
1Division of Cancer Control & Epidemiology, Research Institute, National Cancer Center, Korea. hrshin@ncc.re.kr
2Department of Occupational Medicine, Sungkyunkwan University, Korea.
3Department of Preventive Medicine, Kyungpook National University, Korea.
4Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Korea University, Korea.
5Department of Occupational Medicine, Dong-A University, Korea.
OBJECTIVES: To investigate the prevalence of hepatitis B and C virus infections and determine the associated risk factors among young adults in Busan, Korea, which is known to have a high incidence of liver cancer. METHODS: The study population consisted of volunteer participants in a health survey during 2002, which included 1, 350 students (515 males and 835 females) aged between 16 and 24 years, from three different schools in Busan. The participating students were asked to fill in a selfadministered questionnaire which included lifestyle habits and risk factors of hepatitis. Sera obtained from the participants were studied for HBsAg, anti-HBs, and Anti- HCV by enzyme immunoassay (EIA) method and for liver function tests. RESULTS: Among the study subjects (N=1, 350), the seropositivities of HBsAg 7.9% (95% CI=7.8-8.0), 7.6% (95% CI=7.6-7.7) in male and 8.1% (95% CI=8.0-8.2) in female. And the seropositivity of Anti-HBs was 69.7% (95% CI=69.0- 70.4), 70.5% (95% CI=69.8-71.2) in male and 69.2% (95% CI=68.5-69.9) in female. The seropositivity of Anti-HCV was 0.4%, 0.2% in male and 0.5% in female. The seropositivity for HBsAg in the subjects not having a hepatitis B vaccination history was twice (95% CI=1.0-4.4) that of those that did. Also, the seropositivity for HBsAg in subjects having experienced sexual intercourse was 1.7 times (95% CI=0.9-3.0) that of the subjects who had not. CONCLUSIONS: The present study confirmed the high prevalence of HBsAg seropositivity and sexual transmission of HBV among adolescents and young adults may occur. Further studies to evaluate the relationship between HBV vaccination and sexual transmission are required for the young population in Korea.
Key words: Hepatitis B virus; Hepatitis C virus; Transmission; Korea
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