Prevalence of Blood Pathogens among Transfused Patients in Ekpoma, Nigeria
With the advent of 21st century technology that has resulted in the development of sophisticated equipments, blood
supply is thought to be safer than ever. This study therefore, investigates the incidence and prevalence of transfusion transmitted infections in patients. The study was carried out on 55 hospitalized cohorts who for some medical or surgical reasons needed blood transfusion. Using standard laboratory procedures, the post-transfused blood samples were screened for parasite, bacterial species and viral antibodies. Results showed that 58.18% (32 samples) were positive for transfusion-transmissible infections. Co-infections of several bacterial species, viral antibodies and parasites were also observed in the transfused blood. Specifically, 15 samples were positive for viral antibodies [Hepatitis C (10.90%) and hepatitis B (16.36%)], 25 samples for parasites [Plasmodium falciparum (40.00%), and Plasmodium malariae (5.45%)] and 19 samples for bacterial spp [Staphylococcus aureus (10.90%), Escherichia coli (7.27%), Klebsiella spp (7.27%) and Staphylococcus epidermidis (9.09%)]. Our results suggest therefore, that transfusion-transmissible infections from donors to recipients might exist and this calls for attention. Hence, screening donor blood for HIV and hepatitis viruses alone is not sufficient to justify that donor blood is safe. As such, there is a need to further screen transfusion blood for possible transfusion-transmissible infections.
Key words: Blood transfusion, pathogenic bacteria, Transfusion-Transmitted Infection, parasites.