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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2010  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 18-20

Knowledge and awareness of Hepatitis B infection amongst the students of Rural Dental College, Maharashtra, India


1 Department of Periodontology and Oral Implantology, Rural Dental College, Loni, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of Microbiology, Rural Dental College, Loni, Maharashtra, India
3 Department of Prosthodontics, Rural Dental College, Loni, Maharashtra, India

Date of Web Publication17-Dec-2010

Correspondence Address:
Rajiv Saini
Department of Periodontology & Oral Implantology, Rural Dental College, Loni, Tehsil Rahata, Dist. Ahmednagar, Maharashtra - 413 736
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0331-3131.73876

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   Abstract 

Objectives : To determine the current knowledge and awareness of undergraduate dental students of Rural Dental College regarding the Hepatitis B infection.
Materials and Methods : This cross-sectional observational study was conducted among the students of Rural Dental College, Maharashtra, India. Predesigned questionnaire which assessed knowledge and awareness about Hepatitis B infection and transmission was the tool of data collection.
Results : A total of 150 students participated. The male female ratio was 1:2; mean age of respondents was 20.66 ± 1.01 years. On an average, 59.23 and 40.67% had correct and incorrect knowledge about Hepatitis B infection, respectively. A total of 81.55% exhibited adequate level of awareness while 18.45% exhibited incorrect level of awareness about transmission of Hepatitis B infection
Conclusion : Results indicate that students had adequate awareness and perception level about awareness of Hepatitis B infection.

Keywords: Dental, Hepatitis B, rural


How to cite this article:
Saini R, Saini S, Sugandha R S. Knowledge and awareness of Hepatitis B infection amongst the students of Rural Dental College, Maharashtra, India. Ann Nigerian Med 2010;4:18-20

How to cite this URL:
Saini R, Saini S, Sugandha R S. Knowledge and awareness of Hepatitis B infection amongst the students of Rural Dental College, Maharashtra, India. Ann Nigerian Med [serial online] 2010 [cited 2019 Sep 23];4:18-20. Available from: http://www.anmjournal.com/text.asp?2010/4/1/18/73876


   Introduction Top


Worldwide, 2 billion people have been infected with hepatitis B virus (HBV), 360 million have chronic infection, and 600,000 die each year from HBV-related liver disease or hepatocellular carcinoma. [1] Hepatitis B is a leading cause of chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma, accounting for 1 million deaths annually. Knowledge of the intricacies of viral infection and of the molecular biology of this fascinating virus has led to the successful development of a vaccine and to treatment, sometimes capable of eradicating chronic infection. [2] HBV is a DNA virus classified in the virus family Hepadnaviridae. Humans are the only known natural host. HBV enters the liver via the bloodstream, and replication occurs only in liver tissue. The intact, infectious virus is 42-47 nm in diameter and circulates in the blood in concentrations as high as 108 virions per ml. [1] The prevalence of HBV infection is 5-10% in Southeast Asia and 1% in North Europe and America. The prevalence in India is somewhere between 3 and 4% of the population and HBV is 50-100 times more infectious than HIV. [3] HBV can be transmitted vertically, through sexual or household contact, or by unsafe injections, but chronic infections acquired during infancy or childhood account for a disproportionately large share of worldwide morbidity and mortality. HBV infections in dental professionals have been reported to be higher than in the general populations among Caucasian population in the west, Australia, New Zealand and in Asia where the disease is endemic. [4] The majority of the infections are subclinical, so approximately 80% of all HBV infections are undiagnosed. Like other healthcare workers, dentists are at an increased risk of exposure to HBV infection. Studies have shown that risk of exposure for general dentists is about three to four times greater, and for non-immunized surgical specialists about six times greater than that of general population. [5],[6] The present study was designed to determine the knowledge and awareness of transmission of HBV, among the undergraduate students of Rural Dental College, located in a rural area in central part of Maharashtra, India.


   Materials and Methods Top


A cross-sectional observational study was conducted among the students of Rural Dental College, Maharashtra, India. One hundred and fifty students randomly sampled and voluntary participated in the study, and the subjects were fully informed about the design and purpose of the study. A written informed consent was obtained from each participant, and anonymity of the participants was maintained throughout the study. The data were collected on a pre-tested structured questionnaire distributed among these students in the classroom, and they were asked to fill the questionnaire. The questionnaire consisted of questions to assess the knowledge and awareness about transmission of Hepatitis B infection. The statistical tools like Z test of difference between two proportions, mean and standard deviation (SD) values were employed.


   Results Top


A total of 150 students completed the questionnaire; of these, 66.67% were females and 33.33% were males. The male:female ratio was 1:2; mean age of total respondents was 20.66 years (for males 21.14 years and for females 20.18 years), as shown in [Table 1]. In this study, a significant difference was found in terms of age in years of male and female patients (P < 0.01). After applying Z test for difference between two sample proportions, a significant difference (i.e. P < 0.05) was found in the knowledge of students on Hepatitis B infection for all statements with regard to correct and incorrect answers, as shown in [Table 2]. On an average, 59.23% of the students were correct and 40.67% of the students were incorrect regarding knowledge about HBV. While, after applying Z test for difference between two sample proportions, a significant difference (i.e. P < 0.05) was found in the awareness of transmission of HBV, among the students for all statements with regard to correct and incorrect answers answers. On an average, 81.55% of the students were correct and 18.45% of the students were incorrect regarding their knowledge about transmission of HBV, as shown in [Table 3]; their knowledge was not affected by the year of study in dentistry.
Table 1 :Data presentation of participants

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Table 2 :Results regarding the respondent's knowledge about HBV infection

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Table 3 :Results regarding the respondent's awareness for transmission of HBV infection

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   Discussion and Conclusion Top


In the present study, 73% students knew that Hepatitis B is an infectious illness caused by HBV and 94% of the participants believed that the vaccine is administered for protection from infection for 85-90% of individuals. About 88% of the students believed that the Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) was most frequently used for the screening of the presence of this infection. In general, analysis of students indicates that they have relatively a good level of knowledge about HBV. Regarding awareness of students about the transmission of HBV, the overall average percentage of correct answers was 81.55. About 88% of students knew that transmission of HBV results from exposure to infectious blood or body fluids. Majority (95%) of the participants believed that transmission of HBV results from needle stick injuries, and patients undergoing surgical dental procedures to be investigated for HBV. Majority (94%) of the students knew that Hepatitis B infection is preventable by vaccination. The overall awareness of students is high as per the knowledge regarding knowledge of HBV and awareness about its transmission. Our study showed that 94% of the students were aware of HBV vaccine, which is more when compared with studies conducted among medical and dental interns in Arupadai Veedu Medical College and Mahatma Gandhi Dental College at Pondicherry, India, which showed that 92.9% of the interns were aware of immunization against HBV. [7] But the percentage is less when compared with the Department of Dental Surgery and Periodontology at University of Dundee, Dundee, which showed that 99.2% medical and dental students were aware of HBV immunization. [8] This research was conducted among 150 undergraduate students only; therefore one could argue that the findings are not necessarily a generalization of all the undergraduate students' knowledge and awareness about the same. There is an essential need for further education among the students to improve and update their knowledge of Hepatitis B, by conducting well-designed seminars, programs and workshops.

 
   References Top

1.Shepard CW, Simard EP, Finelli L, Fiore AE, Bell BP. Hepatitis B virus infection: epidemiology and vaccination. Epidemiol Rev 2006;28:112-25.  Back to cited text no. 1
[PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]  
2.Lee WM. Hepatitis B virus infection. N Engl J Med 1997;337:1733-45.  Back to cited text no. 2
[PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]  
3.Tirounilacandin P, Krishnaraj S, Chakravarthy K. Hepatitis B infection: Awareness among medical, dental interns in India. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2009;2:33-6.  Back to cited text no. 3
  Medknow Journal  
4.Vadivale M, Tan TC, Ong CN. Sero-prevalence of hepatitis B infection among dental professionals. Singapore Med J 1992;33:367-9.  Back to cited text no. 4
[PUBMED]    
5.Polakoff S, Tellet HE. Acute viral hepatitis B: laboratory reports 1975-79. B Dent J 1982;284:1881-2.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.Cottone JA, Molinari JA. Hepatitis B vaccine: an update. J Calif Dent Assoc 1989;17:11-2.  Back to cited text no. 6
[PUBMED]    
7.Tirounilacandin P, Krishnaraj S, Chakravarthy K. Hepatitis B infection: Awareness among medical, dental interns in India. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2009;2:33-6.  Back to cited text no. 7
  Medknow Journal  
8.Ogden GR, Laszlo J, Sivarajasingam V. Extent of Hepatitis B immunization among dental and medical students. BMJ 1995;311:231.  Back to cited text no. 8
    



 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3]


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Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Infectious Diseases. 2015; 2015: 1
[Pubmed] | [DOI]



 

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