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Epidemiology of hepatitis B virus infection in truck drivers in Brazil, South America
  1. M A Matos1,
  2. R M Bringel Martins2,
  3. D D da Silva França1,
  4. G C Pessoni1,
  5. R C Ferreira2,
  6. M A D Matos1,
  7. S M Brunini1,
  8. A L N Junqueira1,
  9. M A dos Santos Carneiro2,
  10. S A Teles1
  1. 1
    Faculdade de Enfermagem, Universidade Federal de Goiás, Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil
  2. 2
    Instituto de Patologia Tropical e Saúde Pública, Universidade Federal de Goiás, Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil
  1. Dr Sheila Araujo Teles, Rua T. 38, n. 1097, apto 201, S. Bueno, CEP: 74223–040, Goiânia-Goiás, Brazil; Sheila{at}fen.ufg.br

Abstract

Objective: To investigate the epidemiology of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and viral genotypes in long distance truck drivers in Brazil.

Methods: We interviewed 641 long distance truck drivers to gather data on sociodemographics and risk factors and collected blood samples to test for HBV markers (HBsAg, anti-HBs and anti-HBc) by ELISA. HBsAg-positive samples were submitted to HBV DNA detection and genotyped.

Results: We found a global HBV prevalence of 18.9% (95% CI 15.9 to 22.2). Thirty truck drivers (4.7%) had only anti-HBs, suggesting that they had a previous HBV vaccination. More than 20 years in the profession, more than 15 days away from home and a history of sexual transmitted infections were independently and positivity associated with HBV markers. HBV DNA was detected in nine samples in which genotypes A (n = 5), D (n = 2) and F (n = 2) were found.

Conclusions: These findings confirm that truck drivers are at high risk for hepatitis B infection and highlight the importance of having a public health policy that addresses this population and is based on the characteristics of HBV acquisition and dissemination.

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Footnotes

  • Funding: Research support from Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq); Fundação de Apoio a Pesquisa/UFG (FUNAPE/UFG).

  • Competing interests: None.

  • Ethics approval: This study was approved by the Human and Animal Research Ethics Committee of the Hospital Materno-Infantil, Goiânia, Goiás.

  • Contributors: MAM is a co-investigator who contributed to the project’s conceptualisation and was responsible for all fields operations; RMBM is a co-investigator who contributed to the study’s research design, conducted the laboratory analysis and assisted with write up; DDSF is a co-investigator who contributed with fields operations and assisted with data analysis; GCP is a co-investigator who contributed with fields operations and assisted with data analysis; RCF is a co-investigator who conducted laboratory analysis and assisted with the write up; MADM is a co-investigator who conducted laboratory analysis and assisted with data analysis; SMB is co-investigator who contributed with fields operations and assisted with data analysis; ALNJ is co-investigator who contributed with fields operations and write up; MASC is a co-investigator who conducted laboratory analysis and assisted with the write up; SAT is the study principal investigator responsible for all aspects of the study.

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