Archives of Virology

, Volume 163, Issue 5, pp 1131–1140 | Cite as

The prevalence of hepatitis C virus infection in thalassemia patients in Iran from 2000 to 2017: a systematic review and meta-analysis

  • Masoud Behzadifar
  • Hassan Abolghasem Gorji
  • Nicola Luigi Bragazzi


One of the major infections transmitted through the bloodstream is hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Patients with thalassemia requiring frequent blood transfusions are at risk for HCV. Therefore, this study was conducted to determine the incidence of HCV in thalassemia patients in Iran. The following databases were searched: ISI/Web of Science, Embase, Pubmed/MEDLINE via Ovid, Scopus, as well as Iranian databases (Magiran, Irandoc and SID) from January 2000 to July 2017. The quality of the studies was evaluated using the 22-item STROBE checklist. The random model based on the DerSimonian/Laird approach was used. To assess the stability of the results, a sensitivity analysis was performed, stratifying on the basis of quality, sample size, year of publication, and geographical area of studies. Also, meta-regression analyses were carried out in terms of sample size and year of publication of studies. Fifty-two studies were included. The total number of patients included was 13,291. Based on the random model, the overall prevalence of HCV in thalassemia patients was 19% (95% CI 16–21). The results did not differ before and after sensitivity analysis. The prevalence of HCV in thalassemia patients in Iran was 19%. This figure was lower than in the neighboring countries of Iran. Screening and the use of diagnostic methods for screening blood donors are essential. In addition, the treatment of patients should be seriously addressed by the agenda of the Iranian health system.



This study was part of a PhD thesis supported by the School of Health Management, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Iran (Grant no: IUMS/SHMIS_1396/9423557001).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Author Masoud Behzadifar declares that he has no conflict of interest. Author Hassan Abolghasem Gorji declares that he has no conflict of interest. Author Nicola Luigi Bragazzi declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.

Informed consent


Supplementary material

705_2018_3767_MOESM1_ESM.docx (26 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 25 kb)


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Health Services Management, School of Health Management and Information SciencesIran University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  2. 2.Health Management and Economics Research CenterIran University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  3. 3.School of Public Health, Department of Health Sciences (DISSAL)University of GenoaGenoaItaly

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