Faeco-orally transmitted viral hepatitis: a cross-sectional insight into knowledge and practices of young males

Lt Col Harpreet Singh., Brig Atul Kotwal, SM, VSM., Col Shishir Jain., Col S Sinha., Lt Col R.K. Joshi., Lt Col Barun Bhai Patel., Lt Col Prabhakar Teli., Col Vijay Khunga., Lt Col Anuj Bhatnagar and Lt Col Richa Ranjan

Background: Studies regarding awareness and practices for preventing faeco-orally transmitted viral hepatitis are lacking in the country. An exhaustive study was conducted among young armed forces trainees to assess knowledge and practices regarding Hepatitis A and E.
Methods: A cross-sectional, multi-centric study was carried out on 4175 trainees of armed forces trainees at eleven country wide training centres of armed forces. Sampling was done using multistage random sampling method.
Results: Awareness of transmission of hepatitis A and E through contaminated water and food was 35.81% and 26.78% respectively. Jaundice as symptom of hepatitis A and E was known to only 15.30% study subjects. 97.60% and 93.41% study participants were washing hands after toilet use and before food consumption. However, only 28.99% study participants were practicing hand washing as per WHO guidelines. The study also revealed consumption of items incriminated in transmission of viral hepatitis like Chat-papri/golgappa/bhelpuri (65.72%), cut fruit/salads (60.70%), local ice-creams (28.14%) by study participants.
Conclusion: Low levels of knowledge and practices mandates formulating strategies to increase awareness and practices related to prevention of hepatitis A and E.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24327/ijcar.2017.5970.0843
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