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BMC Infect Dis. 2016 Jan 11;16:9. doi: 10.1186/s12879-016-1337-1.

Intestinal parasitic infections in relation to CD4(+) T cell counts and diarrhea in HIV/AIDS patients with or without antiretroviral therapy in Cameroon.

Author information

1
Department of Public Health and Hygiene, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Buea, Box 63, Buea, Cameroon. nsaghads@hotmail.com.
2
Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Buea, Buea, Cameroon.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Intestinal parasitic infections (IPI) are a major public health concern in HIV/AIDS patients particularly in resource-limited settings of Sub-Saharan Africa. Studies investigating the relationship between intestinal parasitic infections and CD4(+) T cell counts and diarrhea in HIV/AIDS patients with or without antiretroviral therapy in the region are not readily available hence the need to perform this study.

METHODS:

In a comparative cross-sectional study involving 52 pre-ART and 248 on-ART HIV patients. Stool samples were collected and analysed for intestinal parasites by wet and iodine mounts, Kato-Katz, formol ether, modified field staining, and modified Ziehl-Neelsen staining techniques. Blood samples were collected and analysed for CD4(+) T cell counts by flow cytometry. A pre-tested semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect data on socio-demographic and clinical presentation. Data were analysed using STATA version 12.1. Statistical tests performed included the Pearson Chi-square, logistic regression and student's t-test. P < 0.05 was considered to be statistically significant.

RESULTS:

The prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections in pre-ART and on-ART was 84.6% and 82.3% respectively with no significant difference observed with respect to age (p = 0.06), and gender (p = 0.736). All the opportunistic parasites including Cryptosporidium parvum, Cyclospora cayetanensis, Isospora belli and Microsporidium spp. were isolated from both groups, with only Microsporidium spp. significantly associated with CD4(+) T cell counts below 200 cells/μl in pre-ART (p = 0.006) while Cryptosporidium parvum, Microsporidium spp. and Isospora belli were associated with counts below 200 cells/μl in on-ART. Cryptosporidium parvum was significantly associated with diarrhea in pre-ART (p = 0.025) meanwhile it was significantly associated with diarrhea in on-ART (p = 0.057). The risk of diarrhea was highest in patients with CD4(+) T cell counts below 200 cells/μl (COR = 10.21, p = 0.000) for both pre- and on-ART treatment.

CONCLUSION:

A very high prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections was observed, which did not differ with respect to ART status. All known opportunistic parasites were isolated in both pre-ART and on-ART patients. Low CD4(+) T cell count may appear to be a factor for intestinal parasitic infections and development of diarrhea. Regular screening and treatment of intestinal parasitic infections is very vital in improving the overall quality of care of HIV/AIDS patients.

PMID:
26754404
PMCID:
PMC4707727
DOI:
10.1186/s12879-016-1337-1
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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