CLARKSBURG, W.Va. -- Harrison County is seeing a large increase in Hepatitis B cases.
County nursing director Margaret Howe says the Harrison County-Clarksburg Health Department has seen 17 acute cases so far this year. Typically, there are two to three cases a year in the county.
Acute cases are people who haven't previously contracted the disease.
Howe says intravenous drug use is a factor in the increase.
The Exponent Telegram reports that Howe discussed the county's Hepatitis B cases at a recent health department meeting.
State figures show Harrison County's rate of acute hepatitis B was 16 cases per 100,000 residents in 2012. State Office of Epidemiology and Prevention Services spokesman Toby Wagoner says the state average in 2012 was six to seven cases per 100,000 population.