Gay and bi men are in a risk group to be infected with hepatitis


Gay and bi men across Europe have fallen sick as a Hepatitis A epidemic sweeps across the continent. In UK the figures are catastrophic – 500 cases of infection were fixed only near London. There is no treatment for Hepatitis A. Patients who get it have to hope their own antibodies kick in to rid their bodies of it. In most cases that happens, but for a very few people Hep A will be fatal. Doctors are nervous, they are afraid that the Pride Month and especially the World Pride in Madrid, would lead to the epidemic boost in the whole Europe. The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) is tracking three different variations of Hepatitis A. The spread may have started Berlin and Sitges, Spain – both popular destinations with gay men. The number of cases has increased steadily since last June. This was the height of the Pride season with gay and bi men travelling across Europe to party. There are cases in at least 15 European countries so far. But the number of men with Hep A skyrocketed in January, February and March this year. Figures for April and May are not yet published but are likely to be even higher. Most of those infected are men who have sex with other men. And they are young. Many are in their 20s and 30s, the average age is just 33. Yesterday, as the scale of the problem hit home, doctors in London received a letter warning them of the epidemic. So far, the ECDC estimates 3,000 people have been infected.


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