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Knowledge, attitude and practice regarding hepatitis B among medical students

Syed Faisal Hussain, Sultan Rizwan Ahmad, Osman Mohammed Muslehuddin, Husam Mohammed Muslehuddin.

Background: Hepatitis means inflammation of the liver cells. Main cause of hepatitis is viral infection by hepatitis B virus. Hepatitis B is a serious, global, public health problem that gives rise to hepatocellular carcinoma with a mortality rate of about 600000 people worldwide. Medical students are also vulnerable to acquire this infection.
Methods: A cross-sectional study aimed to evaluate knowledge, attitude and practice regarding spread, risk factors, diagnosis and treatment of Hepatitis B was undertaken amongst 341 undergraduate medical students using a standardized questionnaire. In addition to this awareness regarding post exposure prophylaxis and vaccination status of hepatitis B among the students were also studied.
Results: In the present study 98.8% of medical students had correct knowledge regarding vaccine for hepatitis B. Study showed good knowledge regarding spread and risk factors for hepatitis B. 98.5% of the students gave the correct answer that hepatitis B is diagnosed by hepatitis markers test. Regarding treatment, 98.2% said that vaccination is the choice for treatment of hepatitis B. With respect to post exposure prophylaxis 97.1% said that vaccination is main source of post exposure prophylaxis and 91.8% said that HBIg is used for post exposure prophylaxis. Regarding the vaccination status of students for hepatitis B, 26.7% were fully vaccinated and 36.4 % were partially vaccinated and 37% were unvaccinated.
Conclusions: This study showed that knowledge and attitude of medical students are good towards hepatitis B but practice is not sufficient as 1/3rd of students are unvaccinated.

Key words: Hepatitis B, Medical students, Knowledge, Attitude and practice

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