Hepatitis C Virus Infection

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Abstract

ABSTRACT

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) has become the most significant cause of chronic liver disease of infectious etiology in the United States. The recognition that HCV can be transmitted perinatally or through blood transfusions warrants particular attention by the pediatrician. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends screening infants born to HCV-infected mothers and persons with risk factors for HCV infection such as injection drug use, transfusion of > or = to 1 U of blood or blood products before 1992, or hemodialysis should be screened for anti-HCV. Also, persons who received clotting factor concentrates before 1987, when effective inactivation procedures were introduced, also should be screened. Guidelines for counseling families of HCV-infected children are provided.

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