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Background: Infection with hepatitis B (HBV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) are global public health problems. These infections during pregnancy increase the risk of maternal morbidity and mortality, and also pose a risk to the fetus due to mother to child transmission.
Objective: To determine the prevalence of seropositive HIV and HBsAg cases amongst pregnant women at the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital (RSUTH).
Methodology: A retrospective review of hospital and laboratory records of all pregnant women booked at RSUTH in two years, from May 2017 to April 2019, was carried out. Data on patients’ age, parity and educational level and reactivity of HIV and HBsAg test at booking were retrieved using structured proforma and analyzed using Epi Info Version 7. Test for significance using Chi-square was set at a significant level of P<0.05.
Results: 3560 patients had HIV and HBsAg screening out of which 148 (4.2%) and 9 (0.3%) respectively were positive. The comorbidity rate in this study was 0.06%. The mean age was 31.5±4.7 years and the mean gestational age at booking was 22.1±6.8 weeks. There was no significant relationship between their age (χ2 = 2.690, p-value=0.442) and parity (χ2 = 3.759, p-value = 0.145) with HIV seropositivity, but these were significant for HBsAg (χ2 = 13.691, p-value = 0.003) (χ2 = 13.121, p-value=0.001). Educational status was significant for HIV (χ2 = 16.188, p-value=0.000) but not for HBsAg (χ2 = 0.229, p-value=0.892).
Conclusion: The seroprevalence rate of HIV and HBsAg in this study were low. HIV seroprevalence was significantly affected by lower education, while HBsAg seroprevalence was significantly affected by younger maternal age and nulliparity. Continued screening of pregnant women for these infections remains valuable and further community-based studies to identify risk factors are recommended.
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