High prevalence of hepatitis C virus infection in a small central Italian town: lack of evidence of parenteral exposure

Ital J Gastroenterol. 1995 Jun;27(5):235-8.


In the spring of 1994, anti-HCV prevalence and associated risk factors were evaluated in 681 subjects representing all age-groups in the general population of a small central Italian town. The overall anti-HCV prevalence was 8.4%, ranging from 3.7% in the 30-39 age-group to 18.2% (p < 0.01) in the 60-70 age-group; no subject below 30 years of age was positive. Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that the only variables independently associated with anti-HCV positivity were awareness of unspecified liver disease (O.R. 3.58), age > 45 years (O.R. 2.72), and lowest number of years of schooling (O.R. 11.0) while no association was found with any parenteral exposure such as blood transfusion, intravenous drug use, major or minor surgical intervention, use of glass syringes or dental therapy. The HBsAg prevalence in this population was 1.3%, which corresponds to the rate reported in central Italy. These findings show a high level of HCV endemicity, with no evidence of parenteral exposure.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Female
  • Hepatitis C / epidemiology*
  • Hepatitis C / immunology
  • Hepatitis C Antibodies / blood*
  • Humans
  • Italy / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Regression Analysis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Seroepidemiologic Studies
  • Urban Population


  • Hepatitis C Antibodies