Serum hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA, HCV genotypes and liver function tests were evaluated in a series of 189 unselected, consecutive anti-HCV positive intravenous drug users (IVDUs).
Serum HCV RNA was detected in 106/189 patients.
Abnormal liver function tests were associated with alcohol abuse, but not with the presence of serum HCV RNA.
Among 109 patients retested after a mean follow-up of 21 months, 41 were intermittently serum HCV RNA positive.
Patients persistently negative had more commonly a past history of acute hepatitis.
A history of prostitution and/or a pattern of abuse involving>30 injections per week were related to infection by genotype 3a.
In conclusion, serum HCV RNA is either transiently or persistently detectable in most anti-HCV positive IVDUs, but bears no association with abnormal liver biochemistry.
Infection by HCV-3a is more common in IVDUs with more deviant life styles.
In those cases where serum HCV RNA is found repeatedly negative, HCV infection may have been cleared, possibly through an episode of acute hepatitis.
Mots-clés Pascal : Hépatite virale C, Virose, Infection, Toxicomanie, Voie intraveineuse, Mode de vie, Boisson alcoolisée, Epidémiologie, Facteur risque, Association, Homme, Italie, Europe, Appareil digestif pathologie, Foie pathologie
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Viral hepatitis C, Viral disease, Infection, Drug addiction, Intravenous administration, Life habit, Alcoholic beverage, Epidemiology, Risk factor, Association, Human, Italy, Europe, Digestive diseases, Hepatic disease
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 98-0281676
Code Inist : 002B05C02G. Création : 27/11/1998.