Objective: Timely diagnosis of the disease is important to prevent late complications in hepatitis C infection. Anti-hepatitis C virus (HCV) tests are regularly requested in screening test panels. However, it is seen that even seropositive patients cannot be followed appropriately. In this study, it was aimed to reveal the missed opportunities in terms of diagnosis and treatment of HCV infection in the seropositive patient group detected by screening tests.
Methods: It was investigated retrospectively whether the seropositive patients for HCV were followed up in accordance with the diagnosis of HCV infection protocol in our hospital.
Results: A total of 9.878 anti-HCV tests were studied between November 2016 and February 2019, and 133 Anti-HCV positivity (1.3%) were detected. In total, HCV-RNA test was requested from only 58 (45%) of 129 patients. HCV-RNA was found positive in 12 (20.7%) patients. It was observed that S/CO value was above 10 in 28 (21.7%) of 71 patients in whom HCV-RNA was not wanted, and the probability of virus RNA being positive was high. Infectious diseases consultation was not requested from any of these patients; it was thought that there were missed opportunities for diagnosis of HCV infection.
Conclusion: It will be very important to consult the infectious diseases branch of patients with anti-HCV positive, to organize in-service training seminars for physicians of other specialties, and to provide warnings in case of anti-HCV positivity on the hospital automation system in order to increase awareness and ensure that the patients are followed appropriately.