KARACHI – Hepatitis is one of the major killing diseases in Pakistan and every fourth person has the exposure to it at some points of life in Pakistan. Right now there are about four million patients of hepatitis B and C in Sindh and most of them develop liver disease called `cirrhosis’, thereby meaning permanent damaged to liver.
Moreover, Pakistan is among the top five countries which are having the major burden of liver diseases.
These views were expressed by health experts at an awareness seminar entitled “Prevalence, Treatment and Prevention of Hepatitis”. It was organized by Karachi Press Club’s health and environment committee.
Speaking on the occasion, Darul Sehat Hospital’s Medicine and Gastroenterology department’s Associate Prof Dr Shahid Ahmed said hepatitis B and C are viral diseases, causing damage to the liver. A person may become infected with hepatitis B and C if he or she receives blood infected with hepatitis viruses.
He said hepatitis B and C are found everywhere in the world and the countries showing highest rate of this chronic infection are Egypt, Pakistan and China. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection can lead to chronic liver diseases with associated complications.
Dr Ahmed said about 60 to 70 per cent liver cancer cases are attributed to HCV infection which is one of the major causes of the cancer and the fifth most cancer in the world. As per World Health Organization (WHO) Pakistan is ranked second in the world having high prevalence of hepatitis, he added.