Hepatitis C virus infection in chronic liver disease and hepatocellular carcinoma in Saudi Arabia


Dr S. Shariq, Armed Forces Hospital, PO Box 7897, Riyadh 11159, Saudi Arabia.


The prevalence of antibody to hepatitis C virus (HCV) was determined in 139 patients with chronic liver disease (CLD) and 42 patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) during one year at the Riyadh Military Hospital, Saudi Arabia. The anti-HCV was detected in 36 of 96 (37.5%) HBsAg-negative patients with chronic liver disease and six of 43 (13.9%) HBsAg-positive patients with chronic liver disease. In addition, 11 (42.3%) HBsAg-negative hepatocellular carcinoma patients and two of 16 (12.5%) HBsAg-positive hepatocellular patients had antibody to HCV. The anti-HCV prevalence was 1.5% in 4818 healthy blood donors and 1% in 385 antenatal patients. The overall HCV seropositivity of 30.4% in 181 liver disease patients (CLD and HCC) in Saudi Arabia is lower than that reported from European countries.