Pune: In a recent study, it emerged that dialysis patients are at a high risk of viral hepatitis infection.
Dr Nitin Pai, Consultant Gastroenterologist, Ruby Hall Clinic, Pune said that the process of dialysis requires a high degree of safety standards with dedicated and separate units for infected patients.
“However, such safety practices are not adhered to many smaller centres, particularly in the rural belts, putting kidney disease patients at an added risk of Hepatitis infections,” Pai said.
He further mentioned that safety and hygiene protocols are very important during blood transfusions to prevent blood-related infections among patients. Both Hepatitis B and C are chronic blood-borne viruses and a major contributor to liver cancer in our country. While Hepatitis C can spread in various ways through bodily fluids, intravenous injection, and unsafe blood transfusions and so on; horizontal transmission to siblings and family members which occur in households via body fluids is the major risk factor for the spread of Hepatitis B.
“Patients who underwent blood transfusions, dialysis or kidney-related surgeries as long ago as the 1990s, are at an equal risk of having acquired infection. All high-risk individuals must get themselves screened,” said Dr Pai.