Background. Recent reports from all over the world have repeatedly indicated a change in the incidence of individual risk factors for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection transmission compared with the pattern in the late 1980s and early 1990s. In the Czech Republic, HCV is very often referred to as an addicts' disease, rare in the general population. To establish the incidence of individual risk factors for HCV infection transmission in a group of patients on follow-up at the Department of Internal Medicine I. General University Hospital in Prague 2.
Methods and Results. The group of patients included 216 individuals (127 men, 89 women) with documented HCV infection. The mean age of the patients was 40.2 years (10-81 years; SD 14.3). The risk factors esere identified on the basis of evaluation of the patient's medical history, and/or their medical records if available. The presence of at least one of the following risk factors was regarded as the Bource of infection (the figure in backets gives the incidence of the respective factor in the examined group in percent): blond product transmission (15 %), intravenous drug infection (16 %), inclusion finto a regular dialysis program (12 %), profession-related risk of transmission (10 %), sexual contact with an infected individual (2 %), surgery including dental surgery (14 %), invasive examination (6 %), and tattooing (1 %). No risk factor for infection transmission was identi%ed in 24 % of cases.
Conclusions. It has been shown a risk factor for infection transmission can be identified, through careful examination of medical history data, in the Czech population in as much as 76% of cases. An important řmding is the fact the infection can be regarded as iatrogenic in as much as 57 % of cases. Our data clearly show HCV infection is not exclusively a disease of intravenous drug addicts.
hepatitis C virus (HCV).