Epidemiology of hepatitis B and the role of vaccination. Best practice & research. Clinical gastroenterology Chang, M. S., Nguyen, M. H. 2017; 31 (3): 239–47


Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality with a disproportionate impact on Asia and Africa. Current guidelines recommend screening at-risk populations for chronic HBV infection so that diagnosed individuals can be linked to appropriate hepatitis care. The vast majority of infected individuals are undiagnosed and untreated, and are at risk of developing cirrhosis, liver failure, and hepatocellular carcinoma. In individuals who are not yet infected, the HBV vaccine is safe and highly effective at preventing disease transmission. Countries with successful vaccination programs have been able to dramatically reduce their HBV prevalence. A concerted effort to screen, treat, and vaccinate at-risk individuals has the potential to eliminate HBV as a public health threat by 2030.

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