Blood Borne Viruses

Any drug injecting dramatically increases both the risk and incidence of contracting  blood borne virus (BBV) infection of both Hepatitis C (HCV) and HIV (the virus which causes the progression to AIDS)

If you’ve ever injected steroids or other drugs, particularly if you’ve ever been injected by someone else, shared any injecting equipment or vials it is important to be tested.

No one know for sure knows how many people in the UK have Hepatitis C, but it is estimated that more than 400,000 people are infected. (Source – British Liver Trust, 2010)

Risk factors include;

  • Blood transfusions (prior to 1992)
  • Injecting drugs, even once
  • Unsterile tattoos/piercings
  • Medical/dental proceedures abroad
  • Other blood to blood contact (including sharing razor blades, toothbrushes, sexual contact etc)
  • Having served a prison sentence

(Source – The Hepatitis C Trust)

A recent publication by Dr Hope this year demonstrates the increased prevalence of of BBV infections in anabolic steroid users over the general public (see Useful Links page for full report).

The estimated infection rate in steroid users for Hepatitis C is 5.5% and  HIV 1.5% in AAS injectors. This is worryingly high and comparable to psychoactive drug injectors.

A simple blood test can screen for BBV antibodies, which show if you’ve ever been exposed to the virus.

Process

bbv@vitruvianman.org.uk for appointments and any enquiries

Pre-test discussion and consent

Blood test

Post-test discussion and results

Referral to primary care services if antibody positveonly with patient consent –  for necessary further testing  and specialist treatment referral.

Fees

HCV antibody test £69

HIV antibody test £69

Combined HIV and HCV antibody test £119

 

Vitruvian Man - Squaring the circle of men’s health.

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