To evaluate the immunization rate against hepatitis B-virus in a group of children below ten years of age in Duhok, Iraq.
Patients and Methods
This study was included 91 children attending the outpatient department at Heivi-Paediatric Hospital in Duhok from June 2010 to December 2010. Their ages ranged from 12 months to 10 years. They were 44 male and 47 female. To determine response to vaccination against HBV, serological assessment was done using Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) to detect the anti hepatitis-B surface antibodies (anti HBs), anti hepatitis-B core (anti HBc) antibodies and hepatitis-B surface antigen (HBsAg).
Forty eight (52.7%) out of 91 children indicated coverage rate of vaccination, twenty two of them were male and the remaining twenty six were female. Eight children (8.7%) were positive for AntiHBc antibodies, 3 males and 5 females which revealed that they had been infected with the virus and it was found that seven of these eight children also had anti HBs antibodies. The eighth female children were found to harbor HBsAg.
The coverage rate of vaccination program in this study is lower than that mentioned in other countries. It was difficult to ensure that enrolled children had received the 3 doses of vaccine. (Rawal Med J 2011;36:255-258).
Anti hepatitis-B surface antibodies, HBsAg, hepatitis B vaccine