• Taher Salim Khan
  • Farhat Rizvi
  • Abdur Rashid


Background: Hepatitis C is rapidly emerging as a major health problem in developing countries including Pakistan. The present study was conducted to document the frequency of Hepatitis C seropositive individuals reporting for hepatitis testing at a referral laboratory. Methods: Serum samples were collected from 614 people (436 males and 178 females) referred for chronic liver disease from all parts of Hazara division during the period July 2000 to July 2002. Hepatitis tests were performed by DOT immuno-chromatographic method for anti HCV antibodies. Results: A total of 251 (40.8%) sera tested positive for anti HCV antibodies, including 184 males (73.3%) and 67 females (26.7%). Of 436 males, 184 (42.2%) tested positive, while among females, 67/178 (37.6%) tested positive; this difference is not statistically significant. However the male/female ratio referred for testing was 2.4:1. Conclusion: There is a high frequency of HCV seropositive individuals of both sexes among patients referred for chronic liver disease. The frequencies obtained for Hazara division compare well with figures from other parts of Pakistan as well as developing countries. The male/female ratio could simply be a reflection of more males coming for treatment and testing in our setting.Key Words: Hepatitis C, Hepatitis C Antibodies, Hepatitis C Antigen.


Maddrey WC. Update in hepatology. Ann Intern Med 2001;13(4):216–23.

Khan AA. Endemic Transmission of Hepatitis C. J Coll Physicians Surg Pak 1995;5(1):11–3.

Kumar, Cotran Robbins, Chronic Hepatitis and HCV. Basic Pathology 6th edition WB Saunders Company. Harcourt Bracee Jevanovich in Philadelphia. 1999: pp 860–1.

Nosioka K, Watanabe J, Frutus S. Antibody in hepatitis C Virus in acute hepatitis and chronic liver disease in Japan. Liver 1991;11:65–70.

Nosioka K, Watanabe J, Frutus. A high prevalence of antibody to hepatitis C in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma. Cancer 1991;67:429–33.

Zuckerman AJ, The elusive hepatitis ‘C’ virus. A cause of parenteral Non-A, Non-B hepatitis BMJ 1989;299:871–2.

Tremalodee F, Casarin C., Tagger A. Antibody to hepatitis C virus in post transfusion hepatitis. Ann Int Med 1991;114:277–81.

Issar SK, Ramakrishna BS, Ramakrishna B, Christopher S, Samuel BU, Jhon TJ. Prevalence and presentation of hepatitis C related chronic liver disease in Southern India. J Trop Med Hyg 1995;98(3):161–5.

Tsega E, Nordenfeld E, Hansson BG. Hepatitis C Virus infection and chronic liver disease in Ethiopia where hepatitis B virus in endemie. Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg 1995;89(2):171–4.

Waked IA, Saleh SM, Moustafa MS, Raouf AA, Thoma DL, Strickland GT. High prevalence of hepatitis C in Egyption patients with chronic liver disease. Gut 1995;37(1):105–7.

Malik I.A., Ahmed N, Luqman M., Legler L.L, Ullah K., Uddin Z, et al. Hepatitis C as a cause of chronic liver disease in Northern Pakistan. J Pak Med Assoc 1992;42(3)67–8.

Mahmood A, Karamat KA, Mubarik K, Rehman ZU. Prevalence of Hepatitis C Virs antibodies in cases of chronic Hepatitis and cirrhosis at PNS Shifa, Karachi. Pak Armed Forces Med J 1999;49(1):15–7.

Khan AI, Luby SP, Filkree F, Karim A, Unsafe injections and the transmission of hepatitis B and C in a peri urban community in Pakistan. Bull World Health Organ 2000;78(8):756–63.

Mujeeb SA, Jamal Q, Khannam R. Prevalence of hepatitis B surface antigen and HCV antibodies in hepatocellular carcinoma cases in Karachi Pakistan. Trop Doct 1997;27(1):45–6.

Sheikh SN, Tayyab N, Jaffery G, Tasneem T, Sattar A, Ali I. Anti HCV antibody detection. A comparison between Methodology. Elisa vs dipstick Assay. J Ayub Med Coll Abbottabad 1999;11(1):30–3.

Asghar AS, Hafiz M. Antibodies to Hepatitis C virus and Alanine Amino transferase in chronic live disease. Pak Armed Forces Med J 1998;48(1):21–4.

Alter H.J. Sampliner RE. Hepatitis C and miles to go before we sleep (Editorial) N Eng J Med 1989;5:1538–40.

Zuberi SJ. Chronic liver disease in Pakistan, Paper presented in XI Annual Congress Society Gastroentrology & Endoscopy, Peshawar 28–31 March 1995 (Abstract page 69).

Carrao G, Zambon A, Torchio P, Africo S, La-Vechia C, di Orio F. Attributable risk for symptomatic liver cirrhosis in Italy. Collaborative Groups for the study of liver diseases in Italy. J Hepatol 1998;28(4):608–14.

Jose M, Sanchez T, Joseph M. Hepatitis C virus infection in patients with Non alcoholic liver diseases. Annals of Internal Medicine 1990;112:921–4.

Abdullah S, Masud F. Hassan M. Serological Markers in Hepatitis (virus infection in patients with Chronic Active Hepatitis. Pak J Gastroenterology 1992;6(i):35–7.

Tariq WVZ, Karamat KA, Malik F. Hepatitis C virus in Pakistani Perspective. Viral Hepatitis proceedings of Seminar 1998;73–85.

Most read articles by the same author(s)