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Korean J Med > Volume 88(6); 2015 > Article
소화기
The Korean Journal of Medicine 2015;88(6): 630-634.
C형 간염의 역학
정숙향
서울대학교 의과대학 분당서울대학교병원 내과
Epidemiology of Hepatitis C Virus Infection in Korea
Sook-Hyang Jeong
Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seongnam, Korea
Corresponding Author: Sook-Hyang Jeong ,Tel: +82-31-787-7034, Fax: +82-31-787-4052, Email: jsh@snubh.org
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/) which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
ABSTRACT
The anti-hepatitis C virus (HCV) prevalence in South Korean adults is estimated to be 0.8%, suggesting that at least 290,000 people are HCV infected. HCV positivity increases with age and is slightly more prevalent in women than men. Among patients with chronic HCV infection, intravenous drug users comprise < 10%, which is a distinct epidemiological feature of Western data. HCV genotype is a critical factor determining treatment regimen and duration. The major HCV genotypes in Korea are genotypes 1 (mostly genotype 1b) and 2. A peculiar intra-national geographic difference in anti-HCV prevalence was seen, as higher prevalence was found in southern coastal areas, such as Busan and Jeonnam. This geographic difference in exposure to risk factors for HCV infection suggests that active recognition and treatment is a priority in the Jeolla area, and that active prevention is an urgent issue in Busan. Considering the low recognition of HCV disease and the high cure rate using current antiviral therapy, the inclusion of a HCV screening test in the national health check examination program for people 40 years of age should be considered. Further studies on the HCV disease burden are warranted in this direct acting antiviral era.
Keywords: Hepatitis C virus; Genotype; Liver cirrhosis; Carcinoma, Hepatocellular; Korea
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