Indian Journal of Medical Microbiology IAMM  | About us |  Subscription |  e-Alerts  | Feedback |  Login   
  Print this page Email this page   Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size
 Home | Ahead of Print | Current Issue | Archives | Search | Instructions  
Users Online: 2961 Official Publication of Indian Association of Medical Microbiologists 
 ~ Next article
 ~ Previous article 
 ~ Table of Contents
 ~  Similar in PUBMED
 ~  Search Pubmed for
 ~  Search in Google Scholar for
 ~  Article in PDF (51 KB)
 ~  Citation Manager
 ~  Access Statistics
 ~  Reader Comments
 ~  Email Alert *
 ~  Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

   Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded233    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 3    

Recommend this journal


Year : 2006  |  Volume : 24  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 151-152

Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and Human immunodeficiency viruses amongst drug users in Amritsar

Department of Microbiology, Government Medical College, Amritsar - 143 001, Punjab, India

Correspondence Address:
R Tiwari
Department of Microbiology, Government Medical College, Amritsar - 143 001, Punjab
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0255-0857.25223

Rights and Permissions

How to cite this article:
Tiwari R, Aggarwal A, Devi P. Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and Human immunodeficiency viruses amongst drug users in Amritsar. Indian J Med Microbiol 2006;24:151-2

How to cite this URL:
Tiwari R, Aggarwal A, Devi P. Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and Human immunodeficiency viruses amongst drug users in Amritsar. Indian J Med Microbiol [serial online] 2006 [cited 2020 Feb 28];24:151-2. Available from:

Dear Editor,

Drug addicts represent a high risk group for acquiring parenterally transmitted viral infections like human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis C virus (HCV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV). It is very likely that an injecting drug user (IDU) infected with HIV will also be infected with HBV and/or HCV because of common high risk behaviours.[1] Amritsar being border city, is a seat of international drug trafficking and the menace of drug addiction. Hepatitis B virus (HBV) has 300 million carriers worldwide, carrier rate in the general population in India is 2-3% with an estimated 43 million carriers and antibodies against hepatitis C virus (HCV) are present in approximately 15 million with prevalence rate of 2%.[2] There are 5.134 million HIV infected cases in India. HIV, HCV and HBV infections may promote each other and be related to needle sharing behaviour in drug users and to different other living habits.[3]

The study carried out in Department of Microbiology, Government medical college, Amritsar, included 250 drug users (both I/V and oral) attending drug de-addiction center and 100 healthy individual with no history of drug use, as control group.

After pretest counselling and informed consent blood sample (5 mL) was collected observing universal precautions. HIV, HBV and HCV infections were detected by ELISA using commercially available kits and following manufacturer's instructions. HIV positive samples were subjected to two other ELISA/rapid/simple (E/R/S) tests. HCV antibodies positive samples were sent to Maulana Azad medical college, New Delhi, for HCV RNA detection by PCR. Seroprevalance of HBs Ag, HCV and anti HIV and co-infections, among various groups is given in the [Table - 1].

Nine out of 30 (33%) HCV positive sera were also positive for HCV RNA. There was increased prevalence of HBsAg in oral group, (84.75%), overall carrier rate of HBsAg being 23.6%. This finding is consistent with an earlier study.[4] Seroprevalance of anti HCV in the present study is 14.8%. Intravenous drug addiction is a major source of infection with hepatitis C virus.[5] Seroprevalance of 9.6% of HIV antibodies is much lower than the study from Delhi.[1] Non-injectable drug users (NIDUs) are less stigmatized than IDU, although NIDUs are more likely to have sexual relationship. NIDUs infected with HIV and/or HCV may thereby function as a sexual bridge of infection to uninfected lower risk population. PCR study showed 33.3% positivity for HCV RNA which indicates that most anti HCV positive cases are chronic in nature.

Such studies will establish early diagnosis and help in initiating treatment which may present long term sequelae like chronic active hepatitis, cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Education, counselling and behaviour modifications are the corner stones in prevention of parenterally transmitted viral infections.

  References Top

1.Baveja UK, Chattopadhye D, Khera R, Joshi PL. A cross sectional serological study of the coinfection of hepatitis B virus, hepatitis C virus and human immunodeficiency virus amongst a cohort of IDUs at Delhi. Indian J Med Microbiol 2003; 21; 280-3.  Back to cited text no. 1    
2.Tandon BN. Hepatitis B and C: A holistic approach. Gasteroenterol Today 2002; 6: 168-9.  Back to cited text no. 2    
3.Baozhang T, Kaining Z, Jinxing K, Ruchang X, Ming L, Caixi Z, et al . Infection with human immunodeficiency virus and hepatitis virus in Chinese drug addicts. Epidemiol Infect 1997; 119: 343-7.  Back to cited text no. 3    
4.Panda S, Chatterjee A, Bhattacharjee S, Ray B, Saha MK, Bhattacharya SK. HIV, Hepatitis B, Sexual practice in the street recruited injected drug users of Calcutta: risk perception versus observed risks. Int J STD AIDS 1998; 9: 214-8.  Back to cited text no. 4  [PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]
5.Sendi P, Hoffman M, Bucher HC, Erb P, Haller P, Gyr N, et al . Intravenous opiate maintenance in a cohort of injecting drug addicts. Drug Alcohol Depend 2003; 69 :183-8.  Back to cited text no. 5    


[Table - 1]

This article has been cited by
1 Seroprevalence of Human Immunodeficiency Virus, Hepatitis B surface antigen, & Hepatitis C in substance dependents admitted in a tertiary hospital at Amritsar, India
Harsh Chalana,Harjot Singh,Jasmine Kaur Sachdeva,Shivangi Sharma
Asian Journal of Psychiatry. 2013;
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
2 Seroprevalence of anti-hepatitis C virus (anti-HCV) antibody and HCV-related risk in injecting drug users in northern India: Comparison with non-injecting drug users
Debasish Basu,Vineet Kumar,Arun Kumar Sharma,Pawan Kumar Barnwal,Surendra Kumar Mattoo
Asian Journal of Psychiatry. 2013; 6(1): 52
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
3 Quality of life assessment of patients with chronic liver disease in eastern India using a Bengali translation chronic liver disease questionnaire
Deep Dutta, Pallavi Basu, Binay K. De, Irene Ray
Indian Journal of Gastroenterology. 2010; 29(5): 187
[VIEW] | [DOI]


Print this article  Email this article
Previous article Next article


2004 - Indian Journal of Medical Microbiology
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow

Online since April 2001, new site since 1st August '04