Background: Hepatitis B and HIV infections are serious global public
health problems. Among the estimated 40 million persons infected with HIV
worldwide, an estimated 2 - 4 million (5% - 15%) have chronic hepatitis B virus.
This co-infection is common due to shared transmission routes of the agents. In
Ethiopia, even though, HBV infection is more common in HIV infected
individuals, only little is known about the distribution as well as factors
associated with the infection. Objective: To assess the prevalence of hepatitis
B infection and associated factors among HIV positive adults attending ART
clinic at Hawassa University Referral Hospital, Hawassa, Southern Ethiopia. Methods:
Hospital based cross-sectional study was conducted from May 2 to July 2, 2014
in Hawassa University Referral Hospital. Samples were taken consecutively to
get the calculated sample size of 348 adults living with HIV. Pretested
interviewer administered structured questionnaire was implemented. Statistical
Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) Version 20 was used for statistical
analysis. Result: Among the sample of 348 HIV positive adults, 128 (36.8%) were
males and 220 (63.2%) were females with mean (±SD) age of 33.2 (±9.1) years old.
Hepatitis B surface antigen was detected in 24 (6.9%) of individuals. The
prevalence of HBV infection was 17 (7.7%) among females and 7 (5.5%) among
males. About 66% of study participants have poor knowledge regarding Hepatitis
B. History of surgical procedure [AOR = 4.6: 95% CI, 1.8 - 11.6] and previous opportunistic
infection [AOR = 5.2: 95% CI, 1.1 - 23.2] were significantly associated with the
presence of HBsAg. Conclusion: The prevalence of HBsAg was found to be
intermediate in HIV positive adults and majority of them had poor knowledge about
the disease. We recommend provision of routine screening and vaccination
service together with accurate information on risk factors such as
opportunistic infection and surgical procedure for transmission of HBV.
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