Frequency of Hepatitis B, C and HIV infections among transfusion-dependent Thalassemia patients in Bangladesh
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Transfusion transmitted infections (TTI) have become a major problem in patients with thalassemia who have to undergo regular transfusion. Though effective screening system and proper donor selection have lowered the rate of infections, still the multitransfused patients are not risk free. In this study, a total of 148 transfusion-dependent (TD) patients with Beta Thalassemia was screened and among them infected cases with HCV, HBV and HIV were 12.83%, 3.37% and 0%, respectively. Moreover, 2.02% patients were found to be co-infected with both HBV and HCV. Immunochromatographic (ICT)-based rapid test kits are usually used to screen these infections in the donors’ blood before transfusion. However, the traditional ICT kits are not sensitive enough to detect infections. So, combination of both Nucleic Acid testing (NAT) and serological testing may be done to significantly reduce the risk of viral infections during blood transfusion. Besides, although HCV infections are most prevalent among maultitransfused patients, an effective vaccination system may reduce the rate of occurrences.