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Does Isoniazid Preventive Therapy Provide Better Treatment Outcomes in HIV-Infected Individuals in Northern Ethiopia? A Retrospective Cohort Study
Objectives. Early antiretroviral therapy (ART), isoniazid preventive therapy (IPT), and isoniazid-rifapentine (3HP) are effective strategies for preventing tuberculosis (TB) among people living with HIV (PLHIV). The study aimed to determine the effect of IPT on the TB incidence, follow-up CD4+ T cells, and all-cause mortality rate. Participants. Eligible patients on ART (n = 1, 863) were categorized into one-to-two ratios of exposed groups to IPT (n = 621) and nonexposed groups to IPT (n = 1, 242). Exposed groups entered the cohort at their first prescription of IPT, and unexposed groups entered into the study at the first prescription of ART and then followed until the occurrence of the outcome or date of administrative censoring (June 30, 2017). The outcome endpoints were TB incidence, follow-up CD4+ T cells, and all-cause mortality rate. Results. The follow-up CD4+ T cells for the exposed and nonexposed groups were 405.74 and 366.95 cells/mm (World Health Organization (WHO), 2017), respectively, a statistically significant finding (t1861 = −3.770, ; Cohen’s d = 0.186). Nine percent of the exposed patients (620 incidence of TB per 100,000 person-years (PYs)) and 21.9% of the nonexposed patients (3160 incidence of TB per 100,000 PYs) developed TB. Mortality rate (per 100,000 PYs) was 440 for the exposed and 1490 for the unexposed patients. Statistically significant determinants of the all-cause mortality were unscheduled follow-up (AHR = 1.601; 95% CI: 1.154–2.222) and unable to work properly (AHR = 2.324; 95% CI: 1.643–3.288). Conclusion. This study demonstrates the effect of IPT in reducing incidence of TB and all-cause mortality rate and improving follow-up CD4+ T cells. Promoting IPT use can help to achieve the TB eradicating national agenda in Ethiopia.
Overweight and Obesity among Recipients of Antiretroviral Therapy at HIV Clinics in Gaborone, Botswana: Factors Associated with Change in Body Mass Index
Background. Factors associated with overweight/obesity among antiretroviral therapy (ART) recipients have not been sufficiently studied in Botswana. Objectives. To: (i) estimate the prevalence and trends in overweight/obesity by duration of exposure to ART among recipients, (ii) assess changes in BMI categories among ART recipients between their first clinic visit (BMI-1) and their last clinic visit (BMI-2), (iii) identify ART regimen that predicts overweight/obesity better than the others and factors associated with BMI changes among ART recipients. Methods. A 12-year retrospective record-based review was conducted. Potential predictors of BMI change among patients after at least three years of ART exposure were examined using a multiple logistic regression model. Adjusted odds ratios (AOR) and their 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were computed. ART regimens, duration of exposure to ART, and recipients’ demographic and biomedical characteristics including the presence or absence of diabetes mellitus-related comorbidities (DRC), defined as any morbidity associated with type 2 diabetes as described in the international statistical classification of diseases and related health problems (ICD-10-CM) codebook index, were investigated as potential predictors of overweight/obesity. Results. Twenty-nine percent of recipients were overweight, 16.6% had obesity of whom 2.4% were morbidly-obese at the last clinic visit. Overweight/obese recipients were more likely to be female, to have DRC and less likely to have CD4 count between 201 and 249 cells/mm3. Neither the first-line nor the second-, third-line ART regimens predicted overweight/obesity better than the other and neither did the duration of exposure to ART. No significant linear trends were observed in the prevalence of overweight/obesity by the duration of exposure to ART. Conclusion. These results suggest that the ART regimens studied have a comparable effect on overweight/obesity and that the duration of exposure does not affect the outcome. This study calls for further research to elucidate the relative contribution of various factors to BMI change among recipients, including ART regimens.
Evaluation of the Management of Patients with Detectable Viral Load after the Implementation of Routine Viral Load Monitoring in an Urban HIV Clinic in Uganda
Objective. To describe the clinical decisions taken for patients failing on treatment and possible implementation leakages within the monitoring cascade at a large urban HIV Centre in Kampala, Uganda. Methods. As per internal clinic guidelines, VL results >1,000 copies/ml are flagged by a quality assurance officer and sent to the requesting clinician. The clinician fills a “decision form” choosing: (1) refer for adherence counselling, (2) repeat VL after 3 months, and (3) switch to second line. We performed data extraction on a random sample of 100 patients with VL test >1,000 copies/ml between January and August 2015. For each patient, we described the action taken by the clinicians. Results. Of 6,438 patients with VL performed, 1,021 (16%) had >1,000 copies/ml. Of the 100 (10.1%) clinical files sampled, 61% were female, median age was 39 years (IQR: 32–47), 81% were on 1st-line ART, 19% on 2nd-line, median CD4 count was 249 cells/µL (IQR: 145–390), median log10 VL 4.42 (IQR: 3.98–4.92). Doctors’ decisions were; refer for adherence counseling 49%, repeat VL for 25%, and switch to second line for 24% patients. Forty-one percent were not managed according to the guidelines. Of these, 29 (70.7%) were still active in care, 7 were tracked [5 (12.2%) lost to program, 2 (4.9%) dead] and 5 patients were not tracked. Conclusion. Despite the implementation of internal systems to manage patients failing ART, we found substantial leakages in the monitoring “cascade”. Additional measures and stronger clinical supervision are needed to make every test count, and to ensure appropriate management of patients failing on ART.
Child-Centred Care in HIV Service Provision for Children in Resource Constrained Settings: A Narrative Review of Literature
Introduction. Child-centred care approaches are increasingly gaining traction in healthcare; and are being applied in the delivery of HIV care for children in resource constrained settings. However, very little is known about their potential benefits. Methods. We synthesised literature from primary and secondary publications exploring the philosophical underpinnings of the concept of child-centred care, and its application to HIV service delivery for children in resource constrained settings. We concluded the review by suggesting a conceptual framework for mainstreaming and integrating child-centred care approaches in the management of HIV in resource constrained settings. Results. The philosophical underpinnings of child-centred care stem from human rights (child-rights), holism, the ecological model, and life-cycle approaches. Although there is no standard definition of child-centred care in the context of HIV, the literature review highlighted several phrases used to describe the “child-centredness” of HIV care for children. These phrases include: (i) Respect for child-healthcare rights. (ii) Using the lifecycle approach to accommodate children of different ages. (iii) Provision of age-appropriate HIV services. (iv) Meaningful participation and inclusion of the child in the healthcare consultation process. (v) Using age-appropriate language to increase the child’s understanding during healthcare consultations. (vi) Age-appropriate disclosure. (vii) Primary caregiver (PCG) participation and preparation (equipping the PCGs with information on how to support their children). (viii) Creation of a child-friendly healthcare environment. (ix) Consideration of the child ecological systems to have a holistic understanding of the child. (x) Partnership and collaborative approach between children, PCGs, and healthcare workers (HCWs). Conclusion. Child-centred care approaches can potentially increase child-participation, promote positive health outcomes and resilience in children living with a communicable, highly stigmatised and chronic condition such as HIV. More evidence from controlled studies is required to provide concrete results to support the application of child-centred care approaches in HIV care services.
Clinico-Epidemiological Profile of Children Orphaned due to AIDS Residing in Care Giving Institutions in Coastal South India
Background. HIV/AIDS has a greater impact on children. Besides being orphaned by the untimely demise of one or both parents due to the disease, these children are more prone for discrimination by the society. Methods. In this cross-sectional study 86 children orphaned by AIDS residing in care giving institutions for HIV positive children in Mangalore were assessed for their clinico-epidemiological profile and nutritional status. Institutional Ethics Committee clearance was obtained before the commencement of the study. The collected data were analyzed using SPSS (Statistical Package for Social Sciences) version 11.5 and the results expressed in mean (standard deviation) and proportions. BMI was calculated and nutritional status assessed using WHO Z scores (BMI for Age) for children between 5 and 19 years separately for boys and girls. Results. The mean age of the children was 13.2 ± 3 years. Majority (, 65.1%) of the children were double orphans. Most of the children orphaned by AIDS (, 90.7%) had a history of both the parents being HIV positive. The median CD4 count of participants at the time of our study was 853.5 (IQR 552–1092) cells/microliter. A higher percentage of orphans were malnourished compared to nonorphans. (41.1% vs. 36.7%). All the educational institutions, wherein the children orphaned by AIDS were enrolled, were aware about their HIV status. Five of the participants felt discriminated in their schools. Only two of the participants felt discriminated by their friends because of their HIV status. Conclusion. From our study we draw conclusion that even though the children orphaned due to AIDS are rehabilitated in terms of having shelter and provision of education and health care, much needs to be done in terms of improving the nutritional status of these children and alleviating the discriminatory attitude of the society towards them.
Computational Prediction of Subjective Human Immunodeficiency Virus Status in Malawi Using a Random Forest Approach
An individual’s subjective judgment about his or her Human Immunodeficiency Virus status depends on certain factors, behavioral, health, and sociodemographic alike. This paper aims to develop a model with good accuracy for predicting subjective HIV infection status using the random forest approach. A total of 12,796 responses of Malawians over a 12-year period were assessed. Fourteen risk factors including behavioral, health, and sociodemographic information were analysed as potential predictors of subjective Human Immunodeficiency Virus infection status in the general population and thirteen behavioral, health, and sociodemographic information were analysed among males and females. The random forest approach was adopted to build a comprehensive model comprising 14 risk factors in Malawi. It was revealed that age, worries about infection, and health rate were the most significant predictors as compared to use of condoms, marital status, and education which were the least important predictors of subjective Human Immunodeficiency Virus status in Malawi. However, the importance of infidelity on the part of a spouse and marital status as predictors of subjective Human Immunodeficiency Virus status alternated among males and females. The importance of infidelity and marital status was relatively high among females than among males. The model achieved a prediction accuracy of about 97%–99% measured by c-statistic with jack-knife cross validation and verified by Mathews correlation coefficient. As a result, RF based model has great potential to be an effective approach for analysing subjective health status.