This study investigated the seroprevalence of anti-hepatitis B surface antibodies (anti-HBs) and HCV antibodies among pregnant women in Mwanza city to provide data that researchers can use in devising preventive strategies.
A cross-sectional hospital-based study involving 339 pregnant women was conducted between June and July 2017. Data were collected using a structured data collection tool. Detection of anti-HBs was performed using enzyme immunoassay, while qualitative rapid immunochromatographic tests were employed to detect HCV antibodies. Researchers analyzed data by using STATA version 13.
The mean age of the study participants was 25.6±5.8 years. The prevalence of anti-HBs was 85/339, while that of HCV antibodies was 1/333. By univariate logistic regression analysis, increase in age, unknown HIV status, and multigravidity were significantly associated with anti-HBs seropositivity.
The study concluded that a significant proportion of pregnant women have anti-HBs, while the seroprevalence of HCV is low among pregnant women in Mwanza. Researchers should emphasize routine screening of HBV among pregnant women coupled with appropriate management in developing countries. Further studies to determine the seroprevalence of HCV are recommended across the country.