Title: A review of the risk of hepatitis B and C transmission through biting or spitting—H. Pintilie, et. al.
Source: J Viral Hepat. 2018 Jul 26. doi: 10.1111/jvh.12976. [Epub ahead of print]
Summary: The possibility of transmission of hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV) from biting or spitting is a frequent question.
The authors analyzed 245 scientific papers on transmission by biting and spitting but reduced them down to 9 relevant studies. The relevant papers included 16 possible transmission cases of HBV (15 bites, 1 spitting), and 2 possible cases of HCV transmission by a bite.
The authors’ concluded that only 3 plausible transmissions of HBV by bites and 1 by spitting occurred. Only 2 plausible transmissions of HCV occurred by biting. The authors’ commented that even though there are low levels of both viruses in saliva, it is unlikely that HBV or HCV can be transmitted by saliva.
The question about biting and spitting comes up frequently. Hopefully, this study will help to alleviate some of the fears and concerns.
Title: Hepatitis C virus infection in children in the era of direct-acting antivirals—M. Pawlowska, et. al.
Source: DOI: 10.3748/wjg.v24.i24.2555
Summary: There are approximately 11 million children worldwide infected with HCV. In the United States, it is estimated that 23,000 to 46,000 are living with chronic hepatitis C. The most common transmission of HCV in the United States and worldwide is transmission from mother-to-child infection. Other causes of new infections include transmission of HCV in children with a history of multiple sexual partners, injection drug use among children, and children who are victims of sexual assault.
Non-invasive liver tests are the preferred diagnostic tool to identify children with HCV disease progression and who will require immediate treatment. Direct-acting antiviral medications offer the hope of curing all children (and adults) of HCV but that is only if we make the price of the drugs affordable to everyone with hepatitis C.
This is an open-access article – free of charge.
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