AIDS Research and Treatment The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2016 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Parents Support Implementation of HIV Testing and Counseling at School: Cross-Sectional Study with Parents of Adolescent Attending High School in Gauteng and North West Provinces, South Africa Tue, 11 Oct 2016 08:24:34 +0000 Background. A formative assessment of the implementation of HIV testing and counseling (HTC) at school showed high acceptability and willingness to test among learners. However, the success of the proposed HTC depends on the support and acceptability of key stakeholders, including the parents. The aim of the study was to assess the opinions and acceptability of the implementation of HTC at school among parents of adolescents in high school. Methods. This was a cross-sectional household survey conducted with parents of adolescents attending high schools in educational districts in North West and Gauteng provinces, South Africa. Results. A total of 804 parents participated, and 548 (68.3%) were biological mothers, 85 (10.6%) were fathers, and the remaining were other relatives including grandmothers. Almost all (, 92.9%) parents were in support of implementation and provision of HTC at school, 701 (87.7%) would allow their children to be tested at school, 365 (46%) felt that parental consent was not needed to test at school, and 39.4% preferred to receive the HIV test results with their children. Conclusion. Parents accept the roll-out of an HTC program at school and have a role to play in supporting children who test positive for HIV. Sphiwe Madiba and Mathildah Mokgatle Copyright © 2016 Sphiwe Madiba and Mathildah Mokgatle. All rights reserved. Pharmacokinetic, Pharmacogenetic, and Other Factors Influencing CNS Penetration of Antiretrovirals Thu, 29 Sep 2016 14:17:47 +0000 Neurological complications associated with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) are a matter of great concern. While antiretroviral (ARV) drugs are the cornerstone of HIV treatment and typically produce neurological benefit, some ARV drugs have limited CNS penetration while others have been associated with neurotoxicity. CNS penetration is a function of several factors including sieving role of blood-brain and blood-CSF barriers and activity of innate drug transporters. Other factors are related to pharmacokinetics and pharmacogenetics of the specific ARV agent or mediated by drug interactions, local inflammation, and blood flow. In this review, we provide an overview of the various factors influencing CNS penetration of ARV drugs with an emphasis on those commonly used in sub-Saharan Africa. We also summarize some key associations between ARV drug penetration, CNS efficacy, and neurotoxicity. Jacinta Nwamaka Nwogu, Qing Ma, Chinedum Peace Babalola, Waheed Adeola Adedeji, Gene D. Morse, and Babafemi Taiwo Copyright © 2016 Jacinta Nwamaka Nwogu et al. All rights reserved. Perceptions and Experiences about Self-Disclosure of HIV Status among Adolescents with Perinatal Acquired HIV in Poor-Resourced Communities in South Africa Thu, 08 Sep 2016 12:39:18 +0000 Background. There is limited research on the disclosure experiences of adolescents with perinatal acquired HIV (PAH). The study explores how adolescents with PAH experience living with HIV and examined their perceptions and experiences regarding disclosure and onward self-disclosure to friends and sexual partners. Methods. Thematic analysis was used to analyze in-depth interviews conducted with 37 adolescents. Findings. Adolescents received disclosure about their status at mean age of 12 years. They perceived disclosure as necessary and appreciated the truthful communication they received. Adolescents have learned to accept and live with HIV, and they desired to be healthy and normal like other people. After receiving disclosure, they found their treatment meaningful, and they adhered to medication. However, they also expressed a strong message that their HIV status was truly their secret and that self-disclosure to others will take the feeling of being normal away from them because they will be treated differently. Conclusion. Adolescents maintained secrecy in order to be accepted by their peers but also to protect themselves from stigma and isolation. Given that adolescents want to be informed of their HIV status but desire controlling self-disclosure of their HIV status, these should form the basis for development of disclosure interventions. Sphiwe Madiba and Mathildah Mokgatle Copyright © 2016 Sphiwe Madiba and Mathildah Mokgatle. All rights reserved. Validation Protocol of Vitamin D Supplementation in Patients with HIV-Infection Tue, 06 Sep 2016 07:15:36 +0000 Hypovitaminosis D and secondary hyperparathyroidism are frequent among HIV-infected patients. As there are no data about the best supplementation therapy both in treatment and in maintenance, we conducted an observational study of 300 HIV-infected patients for whom vitamin D and parathormone (PTH) had been measured in order to validate a protocol of vitamin D supplementation in patients with HIV-infection. Patients with vitamin D deficiency (defined as 25(OH)D < 10 ng/mL), insufficiency (defined as 25(OH)D < 20 ng/mL), or hyperparathyroidism (PTH > 65 pg/mL) were supplemented with cholecalciferol 16.000IU (0.266 mg) weekly (if deficiency) or fortnightly (if insufficiency or high PTH levels). Rates of normalization of 25(OH)D (levels above 20 ng/mL) and PTH levels (<65 pg/mL) were analyzed. Multivariate analysis of factors related to normalization was carried out. With a median follow-up of 2 years, 82.1% of patients with deficiency and 83.9% of cases with insufficiency reached levels above 20 ng/mL. However, only 67.2% of individuals with hyperparathyroidism at baseline reached target levels (<65 pg/mL). Independent factors for not achieving PTH objective were tenofovir (TDF) and protease inhibitors use. In HIV-infected patients with hypovitaminosis, the protocol of cholecalciferol supplementation normalized vitamin D levels regardless of antiretroviral regimen in a high proportion of patients but it was less effective to correct hyperparathyroidism. Elisabet Lerma-Chippirraz, Roberto Güerri-Fernández, Judit Villar García, Alicia González Mena, Ana Guelar Grinberg, María Milagro Montero, Luisa Sorli, Sonia Calzado, Juan Pablo Horcajada, Adolfo Díez-Pérez, and Hernando Knobel Freud Copyright © 2016 Elisabet Lerma-Chippirraz et al. All rights reserved. Retention in Care among HIV-Infected Pregnant Women in Haiti with PMTCT Option B Mon, 29 Aug 2016 16:30:14 +0000 Background. Preventing mother-to-child transmission of HIV relies on engagement in care during the prenatal, peripartum, and postpartum periods. Under PMTCT Option B, pregnant women with elevated CD4 counts are provided with antiretroviral prophylaxis until cessation of breastfeeding. Methods. Retrospective analysis of retention in care among HIV-infected pregnant women in Haiti was performed. Logistic regression was used to identify risk factors associated with loss to follow-up (LFU) defined as no medical visit for at least 6 months and Kaplan-Meier curves were created to show LFU timing. Results. Women in the cohort had 463 pregnancies between 2009 and 2012 with retention rates of 80% at delivery, 67% at one year, and 59% at 2 years. Among those who were LFU, the highest risk period was during pregnancy (60%) or shortly afterwards (24.4% by 12 months). Never starting on antiretroviral therapy (aRR 2.29, 95% CI 1.4–3.8) was associated with loss to follow-up. Conclusions. Loss to follow-up during and after pregnancy was common in HIV-infected women in Haiti under PMTCT Option B. Since sociodemographic factors and distance from home to facility did not predict LFU, future work should elicit and address barriers to retention at the initial prenatal care visit in all women. Better tracking systems to capture engagement in care in the wider network are needed. Jodie Dionne-Odom, Courtney Massaro, Kristen M. Jogerst, Zhongze Li, Marie-Marcelle Deschamps, Cleonas Junior Destine, Redouin Senecharles, Moleine Moles Aristhene, Joseph Yves Domercant, Vanessa Rouzier, and Peter F. Wright Copyright © 2016 Jodie Dionne-Odom et al. All rights reserved. Feasibility and Acceptability of a Smartphone App for Daily Reports of Substance Use and Antiretroviral Therapy Adherence among HIV-Infected Adults Tue, 16 Aug 2016 11:57:11 +0000 While substance use is one of the most consistent predictors of poor adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART), few studies among people living with HIV (PLH) have utilized mobile phone-based assessment of these health behaviors. PLH were recruited from primary care clinics to report ART and substance use using a smartphone application (app) for 14 consecutive days. The app’s feasibility as a data collection tool was evaluated quantitatively via surveys and qualitatively via in-depth interviews to assess daily report completion, compliance, and study satisfaction. Overall, 26 participants ( years, 76% male) completed 95.3% of time-based daily reports. Participants reported high satisfaction with the app and expressed future interest in using smartphones to report daily behaviors. High completion rates and participant acceptability suggest that smartphones are a feasible, acceptable method for collecting substance use and ART data among PLH. Potential areas of concern such as sufficient training and assistance for those with limited smartphone experience should be considered for future app-based research studies among PLH. Sarahmona M. Przybyla, Rebecca K. Eliseo-Arras, Gabriela Krawiec, Emily Gower, and Kurt Dermen Copyright © 2016 Sarahmona M. Przybyla et al. All rights reserved. Liver Enzymes Abnormalities among Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy Experienced and HAART Naïve HIV-1 Infected Patients at Debre Tabor Hospital, North West Ethiopia: A Comparative Cross-Sectional Study Thu, 14 Jul 2016 07:04:56 +0000 Liver disease has emerged as the most common non-AIDS-related cause of death in HIV patients. However, there is limited data regarding this condition including our setting in Ethiopia. Hence, liver enzyme abnormalities among highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) experienced and HAART naïve patients were assessed in this study. A total of 164 HAART experienced and 164 HAART naïve patients were studied. Blood specimen was collected to determine alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST), CD4 count, and viral hepatitis. The prevalence of liver enzyme abnormality was 20.1% and 22.0% among HAART experienced and HAART naïve patients, respectively. The HAART experienced patients had higher mean ALT than HAART naïve patients (). Viral hepatitis (AOR = 6.02; 95% CI = 1.87–19.39), opportunistic infections (AOR = 2.91; 95% CI = 1.04–8.19), current CD4 count <200 cells/mm3 (AOR = 2.16; 95% CI = 1.06–4.39), and male sex (AOR = 1.83; 95% CI = 1.001–3.33) were associated with elevated ALT and/or AST. In conclusion, liver enzyme abnormalities were high in both HAART experienced and HAART naïve HIV-1 infected patients. Hence, monitoring and management of liver enzyme abnormalities in HIV-1 infected patients are important in our setting. Melashu Balew Shiferaw, Ketema Tafess Tulu, Amtatachew Moges Zegeye, and Amarech Asratie Wubante Copyright © 2016 Melashu Balew Shiferaw et al. All rights reserved. The Need for Pediatric Formulations to Treat Children with HIV Thu, 16 Jun 2016 09:50:40 +0000 Over 3.2 million children worldwide are infected with HIV, but only 24% of these children receive antiretroviral therapy (ART). ART adherence among children is a crucial part of managing human-immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and extending the life and health of infected children. Important causes of poor adherence are formulation- and regimen-specific properties, including poor palatability, large pill burden, short dosing intervals, and the complex storage and transportation of drugs. This review aims to summarize the various regimen- and formulation-based barriers to ART adherence among children to support the need for new and innovative pediatric formulations for antiretroviral therapy (ART). Detailing the arguments both for and against investing in the development of pediatric HIV medications, as well as highlighting recent advances in pediatric ART formulation research, provides a synopsis of the current data related to pediatric ART formulations and adherence. Adrienne F. Schlatter, Andrew R. Deathe, and Rachel C. Vreeman Copyright © 2016 Adrienne F. Schlatter et al. All rights reserved. Language and Culture in Health Literacy for People Living with HIV: Perspectives of Health Care Providers and Professional Care Team Members Thu, 02 Jun 2016 09:58:47 +0000 Low health literacy has been linked to inadequate engagement in care and may serve as a contributor to poor health outcomes among people living with HIV and AIDS. The purpose of this paper was to examine the perspectives of health care providers and professional care team members regarding health literacy in HIV disease. A secondary data analysis was conducted from a qualitative study aimed at understanding factors that help an HIV positive person to manage their HIV disease. Data were collected from sites in Botswana, the US, and Puerto Rico. In the parent study, data were collected through focus group discussions with 135 people living with HIV, 32 HIV health care providers (HCPs), and 39 HIV professional care team members (PCTMs). SPSS was used to analyze quantitative data while ATLAS.ti was used to analyze qualitative data. The findings from analyses of the perspectives of HCPs/PCTMs suggested that linguistic and cultural factors were important themes in the exchange of HIV information between health care providers and PLHIV. These themes included ineffective communication, health seeking behavior, cultural facilitators, and complementary and alternative/traditional healing methods. Thus, this study suggests that language and culture have a major role in health literacy for PLHIV. Keitshokile Dintle Mogobe, Sheila Shaibu, Ellah Matshediso, Motshedisi Sabone, Esther Ntsayagae, Patrice K. Nicholas, Carmen J. Portillo, Inge B. Corless, Carol Dawson Rose, Mallory O. Johnson, Allison Webel, Yvette Cuca, Marta Rivero-Méndez, Solymar S. Solís Báez, Kathleen Nokes, Darcel Reyes, Jeanne Kemppainen, Paula Reid, Lucille Sanzero Eller, Teri Lindgren, William L. Holzemer, and Dean Wantland Copyright © 2016 Keitshokile Dintle Mogobe et al. All rights reserved. Treatment of Dermatological Conditions Associated with HIV/AIDS: The Scarcity of Guidance on a Global Scale Tue, 03 May 2016 11:13:30 +0000 Background. Skin diseases associated with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. In resource-limited settings, nondermatologists and lay health care providers on the front line of HIV care provide much of the treatment for these conditions. Objective. To evaluate guidelines for treatment of HIV-related skin conditions and assess their accessibility, comprehensiveness, and quality of evidence employed. Methods. A review was undertaken of all national and society guidelines which included treatment information on the ten highest burden HIV-related skin conditions. The search strategy included gray and peer-reviewed literature. Results. Of 430 potential guidelines, 86 met inclusion criteria, and only 2 were written specifically to address HIV-related skin diseases as a whole. Treatment information for HIV-related skin conditions was embedded within guidelines written for other purposes, primarily HIV/AIDs treatment guidelines (49%). Development of guidelines relied either partially or completely on expert opinion (62%). Only 16% of guidelines used gradation of evidence quality and these were primarily from high-income countries . Limitations. Due to the nature of gray literature, not all guidelines may have been identified. Conclusion. This review highlights the need for evidence-based summary guidelines that address treatment for HIV-related skin conditions in an accessible format. Suchismita Paul, Rachel Evans, Toby Maurer, Lulu M. Muhe, and Esther E. Freeman Copyright © 2016 Suchismita Paul et al. All rights reserved. Prevalence of HIV and Associated Risks of Sex Work among Youth in the Slums of Kampala Thu, 28 Apr 2016 07:51:59 +0000 Purpose. The purpose of this study is to examine the prevalence of and risk factors for engaging in sex work among youth living in Kampala, Uganda. Methods. Analyses are based on a cross-sectional study (N = 1,134) of youth aged 12-18 years, living in the slums of Kampala, conducted in Spring of 2014. The analytic sample consisted of only sexually active youth (n = 590). Youth who reported engaging in sex work were compared to youth who did not report sex work. Multivariable analyses were conducted to examine factors associated with sex work. Results. Among the youth who had ever had sexual intercourse (n = 590), 13.7% (n = 81) reported engaging in sex work. Self-reported HIV prevalence was 13.9% among the total sample (n = 81) and 22.5% (n = 18) among youth engaged in sex work. Engaging in sex work was associated with being female (AOR 10.4; 95% CI: 3.9, 27.4), being an orphan (AOR 3.8; 95% CI: 1.7, 8.4), ever drinking alcohol (AOR 8.3; 95% CI 3.7, 19.0), and experiencing any rape (AOR 5.3; 95% CI: 2.9, 9.5). Discussion. The reported prevalence of sex work is high among youth in the slums of Kampala and is associated with high HIV prevalence, ever drinking alcohol, previously being raped, and being an orphan. Monica H. Swahn, Rachel Culbreth, Laura F. Salazar, Rogers Kasirye, and Janet Seeley Copyright © 2016 Monica H. Swahn et al. All rights reserved. Experiences and Impact of Stigma and Discrimination among People on Antiretroviral Therapy in Dar es Salaam: A Qualitative Perspective Thu, 24 Mar 2016 09:35:01 +0000 Background. The impact of stigma on adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) has been less studied in Tanzania. Recent studies indicate that people on ART still experience stigma. Qualitative information on the subject matter is especially insufficient. Objective. This paper reports on the dimensions of stigma and discrimination and their impact on adherence to ART as experienced by people living with HIV (PLHIV). Design. A phenomenological approach was used to gather information on the lived experiences of stigma and discrimination. The sample size was determined according to the saturation principle. Results. Respondents experienced different forms of HIV-related stigma such as verbal, social, and perceived stigma. Various forms of discrimination were experienced, including relational discrimination, mistreatment by health care workers, blame and rejection by spouses, and workplace discrimination. HIV-related stigma and discrimination compromised ART adherence by reinforcing concealment of HIV status and undermining social suppport. Conclusion. After nearly a decade of increasing the provision of ART in Tanzania, PLHIV still experience stigma and discrimination; these experiences still appear to have a negative impact on treatment adherence. Efforts to reduce stigma and discrimination remain relevant in the ART period and should be given more impetus in order to maximize positive treatment outcomes. Maisara Mhode and Tumaini Nyamhanga Copyright © 2016 Maisara Mhode and Tumaini Nyamhanga. All rights reserved. Anaemia and Iron Homeostasis in a Cohort of HIV-Infected Patients: A Cross-Sectional Study in Ghana Tue, 22 Mar 2016 13:52:19 +0000 Aim. We determined the prevalence of anaemia and evaluated markers of iron homeostasis in a cohort of HIV patients. Methods. A comparative cross-sectional study on 319 participants was carried out at the Tamale Teaching Hospital from July 2013 to December 2013, 219 patients on HAART (designated On-HAART) and 100 HAART-naive patients. Data gathered include sociodemography, clinical history, and selected laboratory assays. Results. Prevalence of anaemia was 23.8%. On-HAART participants had higher CD4/CD3 lymphocyte counts, Hb, HCT/PCV, MCV, MCH, iron, ferritin, and TSAT (). Hb, iron, ferritin, and TSAT decreased from grade 1 to grade 3 anaemia and CD4/CD3 lymphocyte count was lowest in grade 3 anaemia (). Iron () decreased with disease severity whilst transferrin () and TIBC () increased with disease severity. Seventy-six (23.8%) participants fulfilled the criteria for anaemia, 86 (26.9%) for iron deficiency, 41 (12.8%) for iron deficiency anaemia, and 17 (5.3%) for iron overload. The frequency of anaemia was higher amongst participants not on HAART (OR 2.6 for grade 1 anaemia; OR 3.0 for grade 3 anaemia). Conclusion. In this study population, HIV-associated anaemia is common and is related to HAART status and disease progression. HIV itself is the most important cause of anaemia and treatment of HIV should be a priority compared to iron supplementation. Christian Obirikorang, Razak Gyesi Issahaku, Derick Nii Mensah Osakunor, and James Osei-Yeboah Copyright © 2016 Christian Obirikorang et al. All rights reserved. Treatment Buddies Improve Clinic Attendance among Women but Not Men on Antiretroviral Therapy in the Nyanza Region of Kenya Tue, 22 Mar 2016 11:39:58 +0000 Background. Kenyan antiretroviral (ART) guidelines encourage treatment buddies (TBy) to maximize treatment adherence. This study examined the effect of TBys on clinic attendance in men and women on ART. Methods. This retrospective cohort study included all adult patients initiating ART from August 2007 to December 2011 at four health facilities in Kenya. Data were abstracted from electronic medical records and analyzed using Poisson regression. Results. Of 2,430 patients, 2,199 (91%) had a TBy. Relationship between TBy and clinic attendance differed in females and males (interaction ). After demographic and clinic factor adjustment, females with a TBy were 28% more likely to adhere to all appointments than those without (adjusted aRR = 1.28; 95% CI 1.08–1.53), whereas males were no more likely to adhere (aRR = 1.01; 95% CI 0.76–1.32). Males reported partner/spouse (33%) or brother (11%) as the TBy while females reported sister (17%), partner/spouse (14%), or another family member (12%). Multivariable analysis found no association between clinic attendance and TBy relationship in either gender. Conclusion. Clinic attendance was higher among women with TBys but not men. Results support TBys to help women achieve ART success; alternate strategies to bolster TBy benefits are needed for men. Charles Kibaara, Cinthia Blat, Jayne Lewis-Kulzer, Starley Shade, Patrick Mbullo, Craig R. Cohen, and Elizabeth A. Bukusi Copyright © 2016 Charles Kibaara et al. All rights reserved. Burden of Suicidal Ideation and Attempt among Persons Living with HIV and AIDS in Semiurban Uganda Thu, 17 Mar 2016 06:44:30 +0000 Although the impact of HIV/AIDS has changed globally, it still causes considerable morbidity and mortality, including suicidality, in countries like Uganda. This paper describes the burden and risk factors for suicidal ideation and attempt among 543 HIV-positive attending two HIV specialized clinics in Mbarara municipality, Uganda. The rate of suicidal ideation was 8.8% (; 95% CI: 6.70–11.50) and suicidal attempt was 3.1% (17, 95% CI 2.00–5.00). The factors associated with increased risk for suicidal ideation and attempts were state anger (OR = 1.06, 95% CI: 1.03–1.09; ); trait anger (OR 1.10, 95% CI 1.04–1.16, ); depression (OR 1.13, 95% CI 1.07–1.20, ); hopelessness (OR 1.12, 95% CI 1.02–1.23, ); anxiety (OR 1.06, 95% CI 1.03–1.09); low social support (OR 0.19, 95% CI 0.07–0.47, ); inability to provide for others (OR 0.19, 95% CI 0.07–0.47, ); and stigma (OR 2.48, 95% CI 1.11–5.54, ). At multivariate analysis, only state anger remained statistically significant. HIV/AIDS is associated with several clinical, psychological, and social factors which increase vulnerability to suicidal ideation and attempts. Making suicide risk assessment and management an integral part of HIV care is warranted. Godfrey Zari Rukundo, Brian Leslie Mishara, and Eugene Kinyanda Copyright © 2016 Godfrey Zari Rukundo et al. All rights reserved. Impulsivity, Sensation Seeking, and Risk-Taking Behaviors among HIV-Positive and HIV-Negative Heroin Dependent Persons Tue, 08 Mar 2016 08:06:40 +0000 Objective. The aim of this study was to compare impulsivity and risky decision making among HIV-positive and negative heroin dependent persons. Methods. We compared different dimensions of impulsivity and risky decision making in two groups of 60 HIV-positive and 60 HIV-negative male heroin dependent persons. Each group was comprised of equal numbers of current (treatment seeker) and former (abstinent) heroin addicts. Data collection tools included Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART), Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), Barratt Impulsiveness Scale (BIS), and Zuckerman Sensation Seeking Scale (SSS). Results. In SSS, comprised of four subscales including thrill and adventure seeking (TAS), experience seeking (ES), disinhibition (DIS), and boredom susceptibility (BS), there was a borderline difference in DIS () as HIV-positive group scored higher than HIV-negative group. Also, ES and total score were significantly higher among HIV-positive patients. In BART, HIV-positive subjects scored higher in risk taking than HIV-negative subjects as reflected in higher Average Number of puffs in Successful Balloons (ANSB). In BIS, HIV-positive group scored significantly higher in cognitive impulsivity (CI) () and nonplanning impulsivity (NPI) () in comparison to HIV-negative group. Also, current heroin addicts scored significantly higher in NPI compared to former addict HIV-negative participants (). IGT did not show any significant difference between groups. Conclusion. Higher levels of impulsivity and risk taking behaviors among HIV-positive heroin addicts will increase serious concerns regarding HIV transmission from this group to other opiate dependents and healthy people. Koosha Paydary, Somayeh Mahin Torabi, SeyedAhmad SeyedAlinaghi, Mehri Noori, Alireza Noroozi, Sara Ameri, and Hamed Ekhtiari Copyright © 2016 Koosha Paydary et al. All rights reserved. Evaluation of Olfactory and Gustatory Function of HIV Infected Women Mon, 07 Mar 2016 11:12:45 +0000 Background. Compliance with medication requires good sense of smell and taste. Objective. To evaluate the olfactory and gustatory function of HIV infected women in Ibadan, Nigeria. Methods. A case control study of women comprising 83 HIV infected women and 79 HIV uninfected women. Subjective self-rating of taste and smell function was by visual analogue scale. Olfactory function was measured via olfactory threshold (OT), olfactory discrimination (OD), olfactory identification (OI), and TDI using “Sniffin’ sticks” kits and taste function (Total Taste Strips (TTS) score) measurement was by taste strips. Results. The mean age of the HIV infected women was 43.67 years ± 10.72 and control was 41.48 years ± 10.99. There was no significant difference in the self-reported assessment of smell () and taste () of HIV infected and uninfected women. Although the mean OT, OD, OI, TDI, and TTS scores of HIV infected and uninfected women were within the normosmic and normogeusic values, the values were significantly higher in the controls (). Hyposmia was in 39.7% of subjects and 12.6% of controls while hypogeusia was in 15.7% of subjects and 1.3% of controls. Conclusions. Hyposmia and hypogeusia are commoner among the HIV infected women than the HIV uninfected women and the risk increases with an increased duration of highly active antiretroviral therapy. Ayotunde James Fasunla, Adekunle Daniel, Ukamaka Nwankwo, Kehinde Mobolanle Kuti, Onyekwere George Nwaorgu, and Olusina Olusegun Akinyinka Copyright © 2016 Ayotunde James Fasunla et al. All rights reserved. Use of Cognitive Interviews to Adapt PROMIS Measurement Items for Spanish Speakers Living with HIV Sun, 28 Feb 2016 08:13:08 +0000 Purpose. To use cognitive interviewing techniques to assess comprehension of existing Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) items among Latinos living with HIV and then refine items based on participant feedback. Methods. Latino monolingual Spanish speakers living with HIV () participated in cognitive interviews. Items from four PROMIS domains, including depression, anxiety, fatigue, and alcohol use, were assessed for comprehension. Audiotaped interviews and handwritten notes were subjected to content analysis to identify problems specific to each instrument for each domain. Results. The assessments from the cognitive interviews identified areas for improvement in each domain. We present data on the type of items that were difficult to comprehend and provide examples for how items were refined based on participants’ and PROMIS Statistical Coordinating Center (PSCC) feedback. Six out of 48 depression items, 7 out of the 61 anxiety items, 18 out of 42 fatigue items, and 7 out of 44 alcohol use items were found to have poor comprehension. These items were refined based on participant feedback; the items were then submitted to the PSCC for additional guidance on linguistics and grammar to improve comprehension. Conclusions. Cognitive interviews may be used to enhance comprehension of PROMIS items among Latinos. R. Solorio, N. C. Ayala, E. Paez, A. M. Skalicky, and L. S. Morales Copyright © 2016 R. Solorio et al. All rights reserved. HIV-Associated Oral Mucosal Melanin Hyperpigmentation: A Clinical Study in a South African Population Sample Wed, 24 Feb 2016 09:46:40 +0000 Objective. The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of HIV-associated oral mucosal melanin hyperpigmentation (HIV-OMH) in a specific population of HIV-seropositive South Africans and to analyse the associations between HIV-OMH clinical features and the demographic and immunological characteristics of the study cohort. Material and Methods. This cross-sectional study included 200 HIV-seropositive Black subjects. The collected data comprised age, gender, CD4+ T cell count, viral load, systemic disease, medications, oral site affected by HIV-OMH, extent (localized or generalized), intensity of the pigmentation (dark or light), and smoking and snuff use. Results. Overall, 18.5% of the study cohort had HIV-OMH. Twenty-two and a half percent had OMH that could not with confidence be attributed to HIV infection, and 59% did not have any OMH. There was a significant but weak association between smoking and the presence of HIV-OMH. Conclusions. The prevalence of HIV-OMH in the study population was 18.5%, the gingiva being the most commonly affected site. It appears that the CD4+ T cell count does not play any role in the biopathology of HIV-OMH. R. Chandran, L. Feller, J. Lemmer, and R. A. G. Khammissa Copyright © 2016 R. Chandran et al. All rights reserved. Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV Infection and Its Determinants among Exposed Infants on Care and Follow-Up in Dire Dawa City, Eastern Ethiopia Tue, 16 Feb 2016 13:40:19 +0000 Since the scale-up for prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) services, rates of HIV infection among exposed infants have significantly declined. However, current achievements fell short of achieving the target sets. We investigated mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) of HIV infection and its determinants among HIV-exposed infants on care at Dilchora Referral Hospital in Dire Dawa City Administration. A retrospective institutional cohort study was conducted by reviewing follow-up records of HIV-exposed infants who were enrolled into care. Infants’ HIV serostatus was the outcome measure of the study. Bivariate and multivariate logistic regressions were employed to identify significant determinants. Of the 382 HIV-exposed infants enrolled into care, 60 (15.7%) became HIV positive. Rural residence (AOR: 3.29; 95% CI: 1.40, 7.22), home delivery (AOR: 3.35; 95% CI: 1.58, 8.38), infant not receiving ARV prophylaxis at birth (AOR: 5.83; 95% CI: 2.84, 11.94), mixed feeding practices (AOR: 42.21; 95% CI: 8.31, 214.38), and mother-child pairs neither receiving ARV (AOR: 4.42; 95% CI: 2.01, 9.82) were significant independent determinants of MTCT of HIV infection. Our findings suggest additional efforts to intensify scale-up of PMTCT services in rural setting and improve institutional delivery and postnatal care for HIV positive mothers and proper follow-up for HIV-exposed infants. Fisseha Wudineh and Bereket Damtew Copyright © 2016 Fisseha Wudineh and Bereket Damtew. All rights reserved. Failure to Return for Posttest Counseling and HIV Test Results at the Prevention and Voluntary Testing and Counseling Centers of Douala, Cameroon: An Evaluation of a Routine Five-Year Program Tue, 26 Jan 2016 17:06:14 +0000 This study examined the magnitude and time trends in failure to return (FTR) rates and the relation between FTR and individual characteristics, tests procedures, waiting period for the results, and HIV test results among people who were screened for HIV in the prevention and voluntary testing and counseling centers (PVTCCs) of six district hospitals of the city of Douala in Cameroon, between January 2009 and December 2013. It was a retrospective analysis of medical records. Among the 32,020 analyzed records, the failure to return (FTR) rate was 14.3%. Overall, people aged 50 years and over, those tested between 2011 and 2012, and those tested in the PVTCC of Bonassama were less likely to return for their results. Significant factors associated with FTR included being a housewife, having a positive/undetermined/requiring confirmation result, and provider-initiated testing and counseling (PITC). There was an increasing trend for FTR in the PVTCCs of Bonassama, New-Bell, Nylon, and Cité des Palmiers. HIV testing and counseling services in Douala district hospitals must be reorganized such that individuals tested for HIV receive their results on the same day of the test. Also counselors need to better alert clients concerning the importance of returning for their test results. Patrice Ngangue, Emmanuelle Bedard, Gerard Ngueta, Dieudonné Adiogo, and Marie-Pierre Gagnon Copyright © 2016 Patrice Ngangue et al. All rights reserved. Advancing Behavioral HIV Prevention: Adapting an Evidence-Based Intervention for People Living with HIV and Alcohol Use Disorders Tue, 01 Dec 2015 13:27:54 +0000 Alcohol use disorders (AUDs) are highly prevalent among people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) and are associated with increased HIV risk behaviors, suboptimal treatment adherence, and greater risk for disease progression. We used the ADAPT-ITT strategy to adapt an evidence-based intervention (EBI), the Holistic Health Recovery Program (HHRP+), that focuses on secondary HIV prevention and antiretroviral therapy (ART) adherence and apply it to PLWHA with problematic drinking. Focus groups (FGs) were conducted with PLWHA who consume alcohol and with treatment providers at the largest HIV primary care clinic in New Orleans, LA. Overall themes that emerged from the FGs included the following: (1) negative mood states contribute to heavy alcohol consumption in PLWHA; (2) high levels of psychosocial stress, paired with few adaptive coping strategies, perpetuate the use of harmful alcohol consumption in PLWHA; (3) local cultural norms are related to the permissiveness and pervasiveness of drinking and contribute to heavy alcohol use; (4) healthcare providers unanimously stated that outpatient options for AUD intervention are scarce, (5) misperceptions about the relationships between alcohol and HIV are common; (6) PLWHA are interested in learning about alcohol’s impact on ART and HIV disease progression. These data were used to design the adapted EBI. M. L. Armstrong, A. M. LaPlante, F. L. Altice, M. Copenhaver, and P. E. Molina Copyright © 2015 M. L. Armstrong et al. All rights reserved. Pregnant and Postpartum Women’s Experiences and Perspectives on the Acceptability and Feasibility of Copackaged Medicine for Antenatal Care and PMTCT in Lesotho Mon, 16 Nov 2015 13:09:13 +0000 Objective. To improve PMTCT and antenatal care-related service delivery, a pack with centrally prepackaged medicine was rolled out to all pregnant women in Lesotho in 2011. This study assessed acceptability and feasibility of this copackaging mechanism for drug delivery among pregnant and postpartum women. Methods. Acceptability and feasibility were assessed in a mixed method, cross-sectional study through structured interviews (SI) and semistructured interviews (SSI) conducted in 2012 and 2013. Results. 290 HIV-negative women and 437 HIV-positive women () participated. Nearly all SI participants found prepackaged medicines acceptable, though modifications such as size reduction of the pack were suggested. Positive experiences included that the pack helped women take pills as instructed and contents promoted healthy pregnancies. Negative experiences included inadvertent pregnancy disclosure and discomfort carrying the pack in communities. Implementation was also feasible; 85.2% of SI participants reported adequate counseling time, though 37.8% felt pack use caused clinic delays. SSI participants reported improvement in service quality following pack introduction, due to more comprehensive counseling. Conclusions. A prepackaged drug delivery mechanism for ANC/PMTCT medicines was acceptable and feasible. Findings support continued use of this approach in Lesotho with improved design modifications to reflect the current PMTCT program of lifelong treatment for all HIV-positive pregnant women. Michelle M. Gill, Heather J. Hoffman, Appolinaire Tiam, Florence M. Mohai, Majoalane Mokone, Anthony Isavwa, Sesomo Mohale, Matela Makhohlisa, Victor Ankrah, Chewe Luo, and Laura Guay Copyright © 2015 Michelle M. Gill et al. All rights reserved. Single Tablet Regimen Usage and Efficacy in the Treatment of HIV Infection in Australia Tue, 13 Oct 2015 16:57:41 +0000 Single tablet regimens (STRs) for HIV infection improve patient satisfaction, quality of life, medication adherence, and virological suppression compared to multitablet regimens (MTRs). This is the first study assessing STR uptake and durability in Australia. This retrospective audit of all patients receiving an STR () at a large Sydney HIV clinic (January 2012–December 2013) assessed patient demographics, treatment prior to STR, HIV RNA load and CD4 during MTR and STR dosing, and reasons for STR switch. 206 patients switched from previous antiretroviral treatment to an STR, of which 88% switched from an MTR. Reasons for switching included desire to simplify treatment (57%), reduced side effects or toxicity (18%), and cost-saving for the patient. There was no switching for virological failure. Compared to when on an MTR, patients switching to an STR had significantly lower HIV RNA counts () and significantly higher CD4 counts (). The discontinuation rate from STR was very low and all patients who switched to an STR maintained virological suppression throughout the study duration, although the study is limited by the absence of a control group. B. Armstrong, D. J. Chan, M. J. Stewart, D. Fagan, and D. Smith Copyright © 2015 B. Armstrong et al. All rights reserved. Obesity Is Not Associated with Impaired Immune Response to Influenza Vaccination in HIV-Infected Persons Mon, 12 Oct 2015 13:55:41 +0000 Introduction. HIV-infected individuals demonstrate lower immunogenicity to the influenza vaccine, despite immunologic and virologic control of HIV infection. Obesity has been previously shown to be associated with diminished antibody responses to other vaccines in HIV-uninfected persons. However, no studies have examined if obesity is associated with diminished protective immune response to influenza vaccination among HIV-infected persons on antiretroviral therapy (ART). Methods. We performed a retrospective analysis of immunogenicity data from a clinical trial of inactivated, trivalent influenza vaccine. The primary endpoint was the proportion of participants with seroconversion, defined as >4-fold increase in anti-hemagglutinin antibody titers after vaccination. Secondary endpoints were the proportion of participants with seroprotection (defined as antibody titers of ≥1 : 40) and geometric mean hemagglutination inhibition antibody titers. Results. Overall, 48 (27%) participants were obese (body mass index ≥ 30 kg/m2). Seroconversion rates were comparable between obese and nonobese subjects for all three vaccine strains. Further, postvaccination geometric mean titers did not differ by body mass index category. Conclusion. Obesity was not associated with diminished antibody response to influenza vaccination in a sample of healthy HIV-infected persons. Charitha Gowda, Noah McKittrick, Deborah Kim, Rosemarie A. Kappes, Vincent Lo Re III, and Pablo Tebas Copyright © 2015 Charitha Gowda et al. All rights reserved. The MANGUA Project: A Population-Based HIV Cohort in Guatemala Sun, 06 Sep 2015 07:36:30 +0000 Introduction. The MANGUA cohort is an ongoing multicenter, observational study of people living with HIV/AIDS in Guatemala. The cohort is based on the MANGUA application which is an electronic database to capture essential data from the medical records of HIV patients in care. Methods. The cohort enrolls HIV-positive adults ≥16 years of age. A predefined set of sociodemographic, behavioral, clinical, and laboratory data are registered at entry to the cohort study. Results. As of October 1st, 2012, 21 697 patients had been included in the MANGUA cohort (median age: 33 years, 40.3% female). At enrollment 74.1% had signs of advanced HIV infection and only 56.3% had baseline CD4 cell counts. In the first 12 months after starting antiretroviral treatment 26.9% () of the patients were lost to the program. Conclusions. The implementation of a cohort of HIV-positive patients in care in Guatemala is feasible and has provided national HIV indicators to monitor and evaluate the HIV epidemic. The identified percentages of late presenters and high rates of LTFU will help the Ministry to target their current efforts in improving access to diagnosis and care. Juan Ignacio García, Blanca Samayoa, Meritxell Sabidó, Luis Alberto Prieto, Mikhail Nikiforov, Rodolfo Pinzón, Luis Roberto Santa Marina de León, José Fernando Ortiz, Ernesto Ponce, Carlos Rodolfo Mejía, Eduardo Arathoon, Jordi Casabona, and The Mangua Cohort Study Group Copyright © 2015 Juan Ignacio García et al. All rights reserved. Efficacy of Once Daily Darunavir/Ritonavir in PI-Naïve, NNRTI-Experienced Patients in the ODIN Trial Tue, 18 Aug 2015 16:33:02 +0000 Background. An exploratory subanalysis of the ODIN trial was performed to evaluate the efficacy of darunavir/ritonavir (DRV/r) 800/100 mg OD versus 600/100 mg BID in patients who were NNRTI-experienced but PI-naïve. Methods. ODIN was a phase III, 48-week study comparing DRV/r OD versus BID in 590 treatment-experienced patients with no DRV resistance-associated mutations (RAMs) at screening. Patients received DRV/r 800/100 mg OD or DRV/r 600/100 mg BID plus ≥2 NRTIs. Of the 590 patients randomized, 272 (46%) were NNRTI-experienced but PI-naïve. Results. Overall, 272 patients received DRV/r OD or BID plus ≥2 optimised NRTIs. The mean age was 39 years; 35% were female; 27% were Black, 24% Caucasian, 26% Oriental/Asian, and 23% other races; 17% were recruited in South Africa; and 48% had non-B HIV-1 subtypes. Mean baseline plasma HIV-1 RNA load was copies/mL; median CD4 cell count was 258 cells/μL. At week 48, 111/135 (82%) of DRV/r OD and 109/137 (80%) of DRV/r BID patients achieved an HIV-1 RNA load <50 copies/mL. No patient developed primary PI RAMs. Conclusion. DRV/r 800/100 mg OD in combination with ≥2 optimised NRTIs led to virological suppression <50 copies/mL in 82% of NNRTI-experienced, PI-naïve patients by week 48. Anna Maria Geretti, Mathe Moeketsi, Ralph Demasi, Yvon van Delft, and Perry Mohammed Copyright © 2015 Anna Maria Geretti et al. All rights reserved. Fructosamine and Hemoglobin A1c Correlations in HIV-Infected Adults in Routine Clinical Care: Impact of Anemia and Albumin Levels Sun, 26 Jul 2015 09:45:25 +0000 Fructosamine is an alternative method to hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) for determining average glycemia. However, its use has not been extensively evaluated in persons living with HIV (PLWH). We examined the relationship between HbA1c and fructosamine values, specifically focusing on anemia (which can affect HbA1c) and albumin as a marker of liver disease. We included 345 PLWH from two sites. We examined Spearman rank correlations between fructosamine and HbA1c and performed linear test for trends to compare fructosamine and HbA1c correlations by hemoglobin and albumin quartiles. We examined discrepant individuals with values elevated only on one test. We found a correlation of 0.70 between fructosamine and HbA1c levels. Trend tests for correlations between fructosamine and HbA1c were significant for both albumin () and hemoglobin () with the lowest correlations in the lowest hemoglobin quartile. We identified participants with unremarkable HbA1c values but elevated fructosamine values. These discrepant individuals had lower mean hemoglobin levels than those elevated by both tests. We demonstrated a large correlation between HbA1c and fructosamine across a range of hemoglobin and albumin levels. There were discrepant cases particularly among those with lower hemoglobin levels. Future studies are needed to clarify the use of fructosamine for diabetes management in PWLH. Luisa Duran, Carla Rodriguez, Dan Drozd, Robin M. Nance, J. A. Chris Delaney, Greer Burkholder, Michael J. Mugavero, James H. Willig, Amy H. Warriner, Paul K. Crane, Ben E. Atkinson, Robert D. Harrington, Shireesha Dhanireddy, Michael S. Saag, Mari M. Kitahata, and Heidi M. Crane Copyright © 2015 Luisa Duran et al. All rights reserved. Combination Antiretroviral Therapy for HIV in Rwandan Adults: Clinical Outcomes and Impact on Reproductive Health up to 24 Months Thu, 16 Jul 2015 07:25:43 +0000 Adult women () and men () initiating combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) and women not yet eligible for cART () in Kigali, Rwanda, were followed for 6–24 months between 2007 and 2010. In the cART groups, 21% of patients required a drug change due to side effects and 11% of patients had virological failure (defined as >1,000 HIV RNA copies/mL) after 12 months of cART. About a third of the pregnancies since HIV diagnosis were unintended. The proportion of women in the pre-cART group using modern contraception other than condoms (50%) was similar to women in the general population, but this proportion was only 25% in women initiating cART. Of the women who carried at least one pregnancy to term since having been diagnosed HIV-positive, a third reported to have participated in a prevention-of-mother-to-child-transmission (PMTCT, option A) intervention. Many patients were coinfected with herpes simplex virus type 2 (79–92%), human papillomavirus (38–53%), and bacterial sexually transmitted infections (STIs) with no differences between groups. We applaud the Rwandan government for having strengthened family planning and PMTCT services and for having introduced HPV vaccination in recent years, but additional work is needed to strengthen STI and HPV-related cancer screening and management in the HIV-positive population. Brenda Asiimwe-Kateera, Nienke Veldhuijzen, Jean Paul Balinda, John Rusine, Sally Eagle, Joseph Vyankandondera, Julie Mugabekazi, Pascale Ondoa, Kimberly Boer, Anita Asiimwe, Joep Lange, Peter Reiss, and Janneke van de Wijgert Copyright © 2015 Brenda Asiimwe-Kateera et al. All rights reserved. Relationships between Serum Levels of Atazanavir and Renal Toxicity or Lithiasis Thu, 07 May 2015 14:40:36 +0000 The main aim of this study is to describe the relationship between serum levels of atazanavir, renal toxicity, and lithiasis. This is a prospective observational study of patients being treated with atazanavir (ATV) at Son Espases Teaching Hospital, Palma de Mallorca, between 2011 and 2013. The study includes 98 patients. Sixteen were found to have a history of urolithiasis. During a median monitoring period of 23 months, nine patients suffered renal colic, in three of whom ATV crystals were evidenced in urine. Cumulative incidence of renal colic was 9.2 per 100 patients. The variables related to having renal colic were the presence of alkaline urine pH and lower basal creatinine clearance. The mean serum level of ATV was slightly higher in patients with renal colic—1,303 μg/L versus 1,161 μg/L—but did not reach statistical significance. Neither were any significant differences detected by analysing the levels according to the timetable for ATV dosage. Cumulative incidence of renal colic was high in patients being treated with ATV, in 33% of whom the presence of ATV crystals was evidenced in urine. We were unable to demonstrate a relationship between ATV serum levels and renal colic or progression towards renal failure. C. I. Marinescu, M. Leyes, M. A. Ribas, M. Peñaranda, J. Murillas, A. A. Campins, L. Martin-Pena, B. Barcelo, C. Barceló-Campomar, F. Grases, G. Frontera, and Melchor Riera Jaume Copyright © 2015 C. I. Marinescu et al. All rights reserved.