Expert says hepatitis is a ticking time bomb in Sindh

Ratodero, Sindh: Hepatitis cases are on rise in upper Sindh areas as out of 944 blood samples screened during February 2014, as many as 393 cases were detected positive of hepatitis B, C or D (Delta).

Hepatitis-C has is spreading horribly fast, as out of 590 blood samples, 291 were found positive for Hepatitis C. This percentage comes to 49.32% which shows this deadly disease is spreading fast in Sindh province but the government does not care about preventive measures to check the spread of hepatitis and District Health Officers are only drawing salaries and perks from the State kitty but doing nothing to save health and life of citizens.

The cases detected in February 2014 belong to Larkana district, Central Jail Larkana, and areas of Dadu, Jacobabad, Khairpur Nathan Shah, Kamber, Kandhkot and Mehar.

Out of 286 cases tested for HBV (DNA) Quantitative 66 were detected positive, out of 590 cases tested for HCV (RNA) Qualitative 291 were found positive, out of 63 tested for HDV Quantitative 31 were found positive (almost 50%) and all five cases tested for HCV (RNA) Genotyping were found positive.

These tests were carried out at the Molecular Laboratory established for this purpose at Chandka Hospital in Larkana. This report has been sent to Provincial Programme Manager, HP&CP (Chief Minister’s Initiative), Hyderabad and other related offices for perusal.

As there is no vaccine available in the world for Hepatitis C; therefore, Hepatitis C cases will continue to rise day by day, Dr. Ghulam Shabir Shaikh, Assistant Professor of Pathology, Chandka Medical College, Benazir Bhutto Medical University, Larkana, told PPI.

He said that Hepatitis B & C including HIV/AIDS cases rise because of the fact that IV drug users are available in large scale in Larkana who are sharing the same disposable syringes for sedative purposes. He said that male/female sex workers including eunuchs are easily accessible at hotels, Musafirkhana and other areas and they spread these deadly viruses.

Dr. Shaikh suggested that if Federal Narcotics Ministry, Sindh Health Department & district management authorities start taking serious efforts jointly to combat this menace, the hepatitis cases will start declining and people will be saved from these horrible infections. He said that Hepatitis B & C and HIV/AIDS are just ticking bombs which when exploded will create a catastrophe in Sindh province He said this problem needs to be handled on emergency basis. He said that HBV is a common sexually transmitted infection that can be prevented with proper vaccination; however, he warned that hepatitis is more dangerous than HIV/AIDS.

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