Patient-to-Patient Transmission of Hepatitis B Virus Associated with Oral Surgery

Redd, John T.; Baumbach, Joan; Kohn, William; Nainan, Omana; Khristova, Marina; Williams, Ian
May 2007
Journal of Infectious Diseases;5/1/2007, Vol. 195 Issue 9, p1311
Academic Journal
We used molecular epidemiologic techniques to document patient-to-patient transmission of hepatitis B virus (HBV) between 2 outpatient oral surgery patients operated on 161 min apart. Serological testing of 25 (93%) of 27 patients operated on after the source patient revealed that 19 (76%) of 25 were previously immune to HBV; no additional cases were identified. We found no deficiencies in infection control practices. Transmission may have been limited by the high prevalence (64%) of patients vaccinated against HBV. To our knowledge, this is the first documented case of patient-to-patient transmission of a bloodborne pathogen in a dental setting in the United States.


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