Hepatitis C outbreak traced to private clinic in Gdansk, Poland

Health authorities in Gdansk are investigating an outbreak of hepatitis C thought to be due to the use of improperly sterilized syringes for injecting CT scan contrast material. A total of 9 out of 25 patients who had CT scans at the clinic have developed hepatitis C. Hepatitis C (HCV) is spread primarily by blood-to-bloodcontact associated with intravenous drug use, poorly sterilized medicalequipment and unscreened transfusions. While there is no vaccine againsthepatitis C, there are new treatments available. Travellers can reduce the risk of exposure to this virus byinsisting on the use of new needles and syringes if receiving injections and byinsisting on the use of blood transfusions that have been screened forhepatitis C, if possible.

Visit our Health Library for more information on exposure to and the prevention of Hepatitis C.

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