True positivity of anti-Hepatitis C Virus Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay reactive blood donors: A prospective study done in western India
Background:A significant number of safe donations are removed from the blood supply, because of the reactive anti-HCV screening test results. This study aimed to assess if the HCV (Hepatitis C Virus) seropositive donors were confirmed positive or not.Materials and Methods:More than 68,000 blood donors’ samples were routinely screened and 140 samples were found to be anti-HCV ELISA reactive. These 140 samples were tested by NAT. The NAT negative samples were tested by RIBA. Analysis of samples reactive in single ELISA kit vs. two ELISA kits was done.Results:Out of 140 anti-HCV ELISA reactive samples, a total of 16 (11.43%) were positive by NAT. The results of 124 RIBA showed 6 (4.84%) positive, 92 (74.19%) negative, and 26 (20.97%) indeterminate results. None of the sample which was reactive in only single ELISA kit was positive by NAT or RIBA.Conclusion:Only a minority of blood donors with repeatedly reactive anti-HCV screening test is positive by confirmatory testing, but all these blood units are discarded as per existing legal provisions in India. Efforts should be made to retain these donors and also donor units.