Frequency of Hepatitis C in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis


Mohammad Javad Ehsani Ardakani 1 , * , Alireza Rajaei 1 , Hamid Mohaghegh Shalmani 1 , Negin Shahid 1 , Mohammad Mehdi Emam 1 , Nahid Mohammadzadeh 1 , Seyed Javad Mirhassani Moghaddam 1 , Mohammadreza Zali 1

1 Research Institute for Gastroenterology and Liver Disease, Shahid Beheshti University, M.C., Tehran, IR Iran

How to Cite: Ehsani Ardakani M J, Rajaei A, Mohaghegh Shalmani H, Shahid N, Emam M M, et al. Frequency of Hepatitis C in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis, Arch Clin Infect Dis. Online ahead of Print ; 4(1):39-43.


Archives of Clinical Infectious Diseases: 4 (1); 39-43
Article Type: Brief Report


Background: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection has been explained as a disease that sometimes present with rheumatic manifestations indistinguishable from rheumatoid arthritis. This study has been performed to evaluate the frequency of hepatitis C virus infection in a group of patients with rheumatoid arthritis.

Patients and methods: In this study, during one year, serum samples collected from two hundred consecutive patients with rheumatoid arthritis in all affiliated hospitals of Shaheed Beheshti University, M.C., were examined for anti-HCV antibody and HCV-RNA by ELISA and RT-PCR method, respectively. Using a questionnaire, the frequency of HCV infection, age and sex distribution, duration of rheumatoid arthritis, associated immune mediated disorders and risk factors for hepatitis C virus infection were assessed.

Results: A total of 200 patients (M/F=26/174) who were mainly aged 51-70 years were studied. The frequency of HCV was found to be 2% (95%CI: 0.6-7%). All of the infected persons have had a low risk occupation in terms of exposure to the virus and none of them had HCV risk factors. No associated immune mediated disorder was found in HCV infected patients.

Conclusion: Our results did not support any contribution of HCV infection in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis.

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