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Acta Trop. 2012 Dec;124(3):179-84. doi: 10.1016/j.actatropica.2012.08.004. Epub 2012 Aug 23.

Malaria and helminthic co-infection among HIV-positive pregnant women: prevalence and effects of antiretroviral therapy.

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1
Department of Biomedical Laboratory Sciences, Kigali Health Institute, Rwanda. emil.ivank@gmail.com

Abstract

The impact of malaria on anemia and the interplay with helminths underline the importance of addressing the interactions between HIV/AIDS, malaria and intestinal helminth infections in pregnancy. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of malaria-helminth dual infections among HIV positive pregnant mothers after 12 months of ART. A cross sectional study was conducted on intestinal helminths and malaria dual infections among HIV-positive pregnant women attending antenatal health centers in Rwanda. Stool and malaria blood slide examinations were performed on 328 women residing in rural (n=166) and peri-urban locations (n=162). BMI, CD4 cell count, hemoglobin levels, type of ART and viral load of participants were assessed. Within the study group, 38% of individuals harbored helminths, 21% had malaria and 10% were infected with both. The most prevalent helminth species were Ascaris lumbricoides (20.7%), followed by Trichuris trichiura (9.2%), and Ancylostoma duodenale and Necator americanus (1.2%). Helminth infections were characterized by low hemoglobin and CD4 counts. Subjects treated with a d4T, 3TC, NVP regimen had a reduced risk of T. trichiura infection (OR, 0.27; 95% CIs, 0.10-0.76; p<0.05) and malaria-helminth dual infection (OR, 0.29; 95% CI, 0.11-0.75; p<0.05) compared to those receiving AZT, 3TC, NVP. This study shows a high prevalence of malaria and helminth infection among HIV-positive pregnant women in Rwanda. The differential effect of ARTs on the risk of helminth infection is of interest and should be examined prospectively in larger patient groups.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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