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International News

India: Sex, Drugs, and Hepatitis C -- Deadly Blood Disease on the Rise Among Delhi's Youth

February 27, 2014

This article was reported by Mail Online India.

Mail Online India reported that Indian people ages 15-40 were more likely to contract hepatitis C virus (HCV) because of lifestyle factors including tattoos, unsafe sex practices, unsafe injecting and blood transfusion practices, and injection drug use, according to a study conducted at Delhi’s Lady Hardinge Medical College. The World Health Organization estimated that India had approximately 10-24 million HCV-infected people. Although India’s HCV prevalence declined from 12 percent to 3.3 percent from 1997 to 2002, HCV incidence increased in recent years. Dr. Monika Rajani, a study researcher, believed that new HCV infections often went unreported, since the virus often caused no symptoms for years.

Rajani noted that young people often were careful to choose sexual partners who were not HIV-positive, but were unaware of HCV risks. She stated that most HCV infections occurred among young people and that exposure risks increased with age.

The full report, "Age-wise Seroprevalence of Hepatitis C Virus Infection in Clinically Suspected Infectious Hepatitis Patients Attending a Tertiary Care Hospital in Delhi," was published online in the International Journal of Medicine and Public Health (2014; doi:10.4103/2230-8598.127163).

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
See Also
More on HIV/AIDS in India

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