Take the 2-minute tour ×
Biology Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for biology researchers, academics, and students. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Male patient who is working in the hospital and may be infected with contaminated blood had hepatitis with genome IA 5 years ago. His hepatitis A at that time was confirmed with the rise of anti.HAV IgM and later with anti-­HAV IgG type antibodies. His wife is known to have antibodies against C hepatitits. The patient had icteric illness in about three weeks ago. Which are the best indicators in diagnosing his hepatitis?

Right answer is: Detection of HBsAg and anti-HCV antibodies.

I think this is because

  • to check if he has hepatitis B by HBsAg
  • to check if he has HepC by the antibody

Serum antigen of HB tells us about the levels of IgM and IgG. If vaccinated, then IgG should be positive, I think? What does HBsAg tell you?

Why do we need to detect anti-HCV? If they are found, what does it mean? I think that then it means if found that he does not have hepatitis C then.

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

The last sentence of the question doesn't make it clear what's being asked. But it seems to be asking: What version of Hepatitis did he get from the contaminated blood?

To that end...

Serum antigen of HB tells us about the levels of IgM and IgG. If vaccinated, then IgG should be positive, I think? What does HBsAg tell you?

HBsAg gives you the knowledge of whether or not there's an acute infection of Hep-B. Hep-B IgM antibodies indicate an acute infection, whilst IgG antibodies would show up due to his previous exposure/immunization. If the patient has Hep-B IgM, the icteric illness was probably a re-infection of Hep-B.

Why do we need to detect anti-HCV? If they are found, what does it mean? I think that then it means if found that he does not have hepatitis C then.

That would my assumption as well.

You run the HBsAg and can get two outcomes: IgM(+)/IgG(+) or IgM(-)/IgG(+). The former indicates the icteric illness was probably a reinfection of Hep-B.

You run the anti-HCV and get two outcomes: (+) or (-). The former indicates a present infection, the latter indicates no Hep-C.

What might throw you off is the wife's anti-HepC antibodies. If she was formerly infected and infected the patient (or vice versa) then you'd expect to find a (+) anti-HCV result.

I might come back to this after thinking on it a bit more, but that's the best I have for now.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.