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J Infect Dis. 1993 Sep;168(3):777-9.

Isolation of Mycobacterium avium complex from bone marrow aspirates of AIDS patients in Brazil.

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  • 1Instituto de Infectologia Emilio Ribas, São Paulo, Brazil.


Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) infection has not been reported as a major opportunistic infection among patients with AIDS in Latin America or Africa. In this study, 125 AIDS patients who had persistent fever, anemia, and leukopenia were examined among 2628 AIDS patients admitted to Instituto de Infectologia Emilio Ribas between May 1990 and April 1992. From the bone marrow aspirates of the 125 patients, MAC was isolated from 23 (18.4%) and Mycobacterium tuberculosis was isolated from 9 (7.2%). Between 1985 and 1990, only 11 MAC isolations among 60,000 cultures obtained from human immunodeficiency virus-seronegative patients were documented in São Paulo. Hence, the minimal estimated rate of MAC infection in AIDS patients in this city was 23/2628, or 0.88%. These findings suggest that MAC infection is an important opportunistic infection, especially among a subset of patients with AIDS in Brazil who have clinical characteristics and risk activities similar to those associated with MAC infections in North America and Europe.

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