STEPHEN C. HADLER, M.D.; DAVID L. SORLEY, M.D.; KATHLEEN H. ACREE, M.D.; HANNAH M. WEBSTER, R.N.; CHARLES A. SCHABLE, M.S.; DONALD P. FRANCIS, M.D.; JAMES E. MAYNARD, M.D.
In September 1978, cases of hepatitis B in two patients treated by the same dentist led to investigation of a dental practice in Baltimore, Maryland. The dentist had had acute hepatitis B in June 1978 and had remained positive for hepatitis B surface antigen and hepatitis B e antigen over the ensuing 6 months. He had continued to work while infected, wearing surgical gloves to minimize the risk of transmitting infection. Serologic follow-up of 764 patients showed that a total of six patients, three of whom were symptomatic, had developed hepatitis B infection after dental treatment. All six were among a group of 395 patients treated before the dentist began wearing gloves. In this group, patients having highly traumatic dental work (attack rate 6.9%) were at significantly higher risk than patients having either less traumatic work (attack rate 0.5%) or nontraumatic work (attack rate = 0, 0,p < 0.02). None of 369 patients treated only when the dentist wore gloves became infected, suggesting that gloves could reduce the risk of virus transmission by the dentist.
HADLER SC, SORLEY DL, ACREE KH, WEBSTER HM, SCHABLE CA, FRANCIS DP, et al. An Outbreak of Hepatitis Bina Dental Practice. Ann Intern Med. ;95:133–138. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-95-2-133
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1981;95(2):133-138.
Gastroenterology/Hepatology, Liver Disease.
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