Hepatitis B and C virus infections among pregnant women in Arab and African countries
Keywords:hepatitis B, hepatitis C, epidemiology, Africa, Arab, Middle East, hepatitis B serology, hepatitis C serology
Introduction: The epidemiology of viral hepatitis during pregnancy is of paramount importance for health planners and program managers. Data on viral hepatitis during pregnancy are not readily available in many African and Arab countries. Both regions have their own unique geography, and comprise over 59 states with crossover and interaction of different cultures.
Methodology: A systematic electronic search of the published literature was conducted and data on epidemiology and risk factors of maternal hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and hepatitis C (HCV) infection in Arab and African countries were extracted from relevant studies.
Results: The serology of hepatitis viruses varies greatly among these countries, with different viral genotype patterns. Such a variation in prevalence could be explained by the different risk factors involved. Sexual contact, perinatal infection, blood and its derivatives, hemodialysis, intravenous and percutaneous drug use, and occupational, habitual, and social behavior have been identified as risk factors for hepatitis transmission in various settings in these countries.
Conclusions: Infection from hepatitis B and C viruses imposes major socioeconomic and even political burdens on such young and dynamic societies. Thus strategies and clear policies of intervention are required to combat the consequences of hepatitis B and C at both the regional and national levels.
How to Cite
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).