Blood Donations and Hepatitis C

During the 1980s and early 1990s in Shanxi Province, China, illegal blood donation practices, including pooling blood and reinfusing compatible red blood cells to permit more frequent donations, led to high hepatitis C infection rates among blood and plasma donors, according to a study by researchers, including Han-zhu Qian, MD, PhD, a research instructor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).

Details of the findings will be published in the Nov. 15, 2005 issue of the Journal of Infectious Diseases, also available online.

"We also found failure to screen for hepatitis C in transfusion recipients increased their risk for infection. Although blood collection and banking practices in that area of China are significantly better today, monitoring and continuing improvement are still needed," Qian commented.

Source: University of Alabama at Birmingham