Viral hepatitis caused 10 times as many deaths as HIV-related cases in the European Union in 2010, according to research presented at the International Liver Congress in London.
Benjamin Cowie, MBBS, PhD, and Jennifer MacLachlan, MSc, of the University of Melbourne and Melbourne Health, analyzed the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010 (GBD) and compared mortality attributed to hepatitis B infection (HBV), hepatitis C infection (HCV) and HIV/AIDS across Europe, then compared data to other global trends. The GBD, which collated data from 1990 to 2010, is the largest systematic effort to describe global distribution and causes of major diseases, injuries and health risk factors, according to a press release.
According to the researchers on data presented at the conference, HCV caused an estimated 57,000 deaths in 2010, compared with 31,000 deaths from HBV and slightly more than 8,000 from HIV/AIDS in the European Union (EU).
“The GBD estimated around 1.3 million people lost their lives to viral hepatitis since 1990, which is comparable to the respective burdens of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria [combined],” Cowie said in the release. “The release of the GBD 2010 results provides a unique opportunity to set global and local priorities for health, and address previous imbalances in addressing the major causes of preventable causes of human death, among which hepatitis B and C must clearly be counted.”
The researchers reported that GBD data indicated that HIV/AIDS ranked sixth with 1.47 million deaths worldwide in 2010, compared with viral hepatitis B and C, which ranked ninth globally with a combined 1.29 million deaths.
Disclosure: Relevant financial disclosures were not provided by researchers.