, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 522-528
Date: 07 Jan 2014

Knowledge and Fears Among Asian Americans Chronically Infected with Hepatitis B

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Asian Americans are disproportionately affected by hepatitis B (HBV) infection. In the USA, one in ten Asian Americans is infected with HBV. The purpose of the study was to explore knowledge, fears and follow-up care among Asian Americans chronically infected with hepatitis B. A sample of 154 completed an online survey which included demographic information, follow-up treatment information, and HBV knowledge and fears/concerns. Our findings indicate that there are differences by ethnicity and birthplace among Asian Americans in terms of follow-up care and treatment. In addition, our study indicates that there were substantial knowledge gaps regarding contracting HBV, transmission, and prevention. We found that HBV-infected respondents had many fears about their infection. Three primary concerns were identified: (a) concerns related to liver cancer and overall health, (b) transmission to loved ones, and (c) stigma. Our findings indicate that Asian Americans chronically infected with HBV need more education to manage HBV including information on the importance of follow-up treatment and care and education on preventing transmission, risk for liver cancer, and HBV impact on overall health.