There are 350,000,000 people worldwide chronically infected with Hepatitis B, with four million acute infections annually.
With infection concentrated in hard-to-reach populations and low resource settings, rapid point-of-care tests offer an efficient screening alternative to laboratory tests.
Dr Nitika Pant Pai and colleagues from Canada conducted a meta-analysis to evaluate accuracy of rapid point-of-care tests screening for Hepatitis B.
There were 2 reviewers that searched four databases, critiqued quality.
|In subgroup 1, the pooled sensitivity was 95%|
|American Journal of Gastroenterology|
A hierarchical Bayesian meta-analysis correcting for imperfect reference standards was used.
Based on components of the antigen–antibody response, 17 studies were stratified into 3 subgroups.
The first subgroup included Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) tests, the second subgroup included anti-HBsAg tests, and the third included HBs+eAg tests.
The researchers found that pooled estimates on individual tests with sufficient data.
In subgroup 1, the pooled sensitivity was 95%, and specificity was 99.5%.
The team found that the Determine test reported a pooled sensitivity of 98%, and a specificity of 99.9%.
In subgroup 2, sensitivity was 93%, specificity was 93%, and in subgroup 3, the Binax test showed a sensitivity of 96%, and a specificity of 99.8%.
Dr Pai's team commented, "HBsAg tests, including Determine, and the HBs+eAg test, Binax showed high accuracy. Improvements in sensitivity of antibody-based tests will enhance their potential for global first-line screening."