Mar 13, 2001
I wonder if the figure of 3-10 transmission risk for hepatitis c is really true.Ippolito et al report from a large database (3600 exposures,70percutaneous) transmission risk of only 0.4.Serra ;Torres of almost 500 exposures only 0,7.Considering the huge underreporting of needlesticks by nurses, doctors and maybe the fact,that exposures are more often reported when the lead to transmission,I want to know how great the risk really is. dear heimo(Austria,Europe)
Response from Dr. Dieterich
I don't think there is a really certain way to get that information. It sounds like the chances of percutaneous transmission are low, but the number of needlesticks are high. In the US, the estimates are 800,000 needlesticks and about 2000 health care workers infected with HCV, 400 with HBV and 40 with HIV. Some of course will get two viruses. The risk depends on the size of the needle, the size of the bore and the viral load of the patient. Good luck! DTD
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