The outcome of a rapid hepatitis B vaccination programme in a methadone treatment clinic
Version of Record online: 11 JAN 2010
© 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 Society for the Study of Addiction
Volume 105, Issue 2, pages 329–334, February 2010
How to Cite
Ramasamy, P., Lintzeris, N., Sutton, Y., Taylor, H., Day, C. A. and Haber, P. S. (2010), The outcome of a rapid hepatitis B vaccination programme in a methadone treatment clinic. Addiction, 105: 329–334. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2009.02765.x
- Issue online: 11 JAN 2010
- Version of Record online: 11 JAN 2010
- Submitted 10 July 2008; initial review completed 16 October 2008; final version accepted 30 July 2009
Aim Injecting drug users are a high-risk population for hepatitis B (HBV), but are difficult to engage in vaccination programmes. This study examines the completion rates of a HBV vaccination schedule and seroconversion in a group of patients in methadone maintenance treatment.
Methods Patients at a public methadone maintenance programme in Sydney, Australia, were screened for viral hepatitis (hepatitis A, B and C) and offered a rapid HBV vaccination schedule (0, 1 and 2 months). Hepatitis B surface antibody (antiHBs) was retested on completion of the vaccination schedule.
Results A total of 143 patients [71.3% male, mean age 33.1 (standard deviation ± 8.3)] enrolled in the project. Forty-nine per cent of patients were HAV antibody (Ab) positive, 81.1% hepatitis C virus (HCV) antibody (Ab) positive and 38.9% antiHBs positive. Exposure to multiple hepatitis viruses was common, with 24.5% testing positive for all three viruses. Seventy-three (83%) of the 88 antiHBs negative patients completed the vaccination schedule. Post-vaccination serology indicated a seroconversion rate of 75.4% (55 of 73) of completors, or 62.5% of eligible participants (55 of 88).
Conclusion While there was a high rate of completion of the rapid vaccination schedule in this population, a moderate seroconversion rate was achieved. Further work is required to identify an optimal vaccination schedule in opioid substitution patients.