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Therapie. 2013 Jan-Feb;68(1):49-51. doi: 10.2515/therapie/2013010. Epub 2013 Mar 14.

Fluctuating anaemia in treated HIV patients: could be a PICA?

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  • 1Service Universitaire des Maladies infectieuses et du Voyageur, Centre Hospitalier, Tourcoing, France.


HIV infected patients are frequently exposed to anaemia, due to antiretroviral agents and/or prophylactic treatment of opportunistic infections. Anemia due to PICA, unusually evoked in our western countries, could be a more frequent situation than imagined. We report two cases of fluctuating anemia with no HIV or iatrogenic origin, observed in two HIV infected women, 47 years old and 33 years old respectively, coming from Africa and treated with antiretroviral agents. The anemia was explained by a culturally sanctioned practice of kaolin ingestion, in the broader context of PICA and resolved after the withdrawal of kaolin ingestion. PICA, and in particular kaolin ingestion, must be investigated when HIV infected patients came from Africa and presented significative unexplained anemia.

© 2013 Société Française de Pharmacologie et de Thérapeutique.

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