Breastfeeding, mother-to-child HIV transmission, and mortality among infants born to HIV-Infected women on highly active antiretroviral therapy in rural Uganda.
ABSTRACT Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) drastically reduces mother-to-child transmission of HIV, but where breastfeeding is the only safe infant feeding option, HAART for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission needs to be evaluated in relation to both HIV transmission and infant mortality.
One hundred and two > or = 18-year old women on HAART in rural Uganda who delivered one or more live infants between March 1, 2003 and January 1, 2007 were enrolled in a prospective study to assess HIV transmission and infant survival. All pregnant women were counseled to exclusively breastfeed for 3-6 months according to national guidelines at the time. Infants were followed-up for > or = 7 months and were offered HIV polymerase chain reaction testing quarterly from 6 weeks of age until > or = 6 weeks after complete weaning.
Of 118 infants born during follow-up, 109 (92%) were breastfed. Median durations of exclusive and total breastfeeding were 4 months (interquartile range 3-6) and 5 months (interquartile range 3-7), respectively. None of the infants tested HIV polymerase chain reaction positive over follow-up but 16 infants died without a definitive HIV status at a median age of 2.6 months. In total, 23 (19%) infants died during follow-up at a median age of 3.7 months; 15 (65%) of whom with severe diarrhea and/or vomiting in the week preceding their death. In multivariate analysis, there was a 6-fold greater risk of death among infants breastfed for less than 6 months independent of maternal CD4 count closest to delivery, maternal marital status or maternal death (adjusted hazard ratio = 6.19; 95% confidence interval 1.41-27.0, P = 0.015).
In resource-constrained settings, HIV-infected pregnant women should be assessed for HAART eligibility and treated as needed without delay, and should be encouraged to breastfeed their infants for at least 6 months.
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ABSTRACT: Effective biomedical and structural HIV prevention approaches are being implemented throughout sub-Saharan Africa. A "lifecycle approach" to HIV prevention recognizes the interconnectedness of the health of women, children and adolescents, and prioritizes interventions that have benefits across these populations. We review new biomedical prevention strategies for women, adolescents and children, structural prevention approaches, and new modalities for eliminating infant HIV infection, and discuss the implications of a lifecycle approach for the success of these methods. Some examples of the lifecycle approach include evaluating education and HIV prevention strategies among adolescent girls not only for their role in reducing risk of HIV infection and early pregnancy, but also to promote healthy adolescents who will have healthier future children. Similarly, early childhood interventions such as exclusive breastfeeding not only prevent HIV, but also contribute to better child and adolescent health outcomes. The most ambitious biomedical infant HIV prevention effort, Option B+, also represents a lifecycle approach by leveraging the prevention benefits of optimal HIV treatment for mothers; maternal survival benefits from Option B+ may have ultimately more health impact on children than the prevention of infant HIV in isolation. The potential for synergistic and additive benefits of lifecycle interventions should be considered when scaling up HIV prevention efforts in sub-Saharan Africa.Current HIV/AIDS Reports 03/2014;
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ABSTRACT: There is consensus on the benefits for all infants of exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months and introduction of appropriate complementary foods at 6 months, followed by continued breastfeeding. However, guidelines on infant and young child feeding (IYCF) for HIV-positive mothers have changed continually since 2000. This article explores issues and evidence related to IYCF for the prevention and care of paediatric HIV in resource-limited settings in light of new HIV treatment guidelines, implementation challenges and knowledge gaps.In 2010 the impact of antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) on reducing the risk of mother-to-child transmission of HIV moved WHO to urge countries to endorse either avoidance of all breastfeeding or exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months while taking ARVs, depending on which strategy could give their infants the greatest chance of HIV-free survival. Implementation of the 2010 recommendations is challenged by lack of healthcare provider training, weak clinic-community linkages to support mother/infant pairs and lack of national monitoring and reporting on infant feeding indicators.More evidence is needed to inform prevention and treatment of malnutrition among HIV-exposed and HIV-infected children. Knowledge gaps include the effects of prolonged ARV exposure, the cause of HIV-associated growth faltering, the effects of early infant testing on continuation of breastfeeding and specific nutrition interventions needed for HIV-infected children.Significant progress has been made toward keeping mothers alive and reducing paediatric HIV infection, but sustained political, financial and scientific commitment are required to ensure meaningful interventions to eliminate postnatal transmission and meet the nutritional needs of HIV-exposed and HIV-infected children.AIDS (London, England) 11/2013; 27 Suppl 2:S169-77. · 6.56 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-exposed uninfected children (HEU) have an increased risk of morbidity and mortality compared with HIV-unexposed uninfected children (HUU); however, prior studies have not fully accounted for the role of both breastfeeding and age on this association. In this cohort of HEU and HUU in Uganda, non-breastfeeding HEU, from 6-11 months compared with non-breastfeeding HUU had a higher risk of hospitalizations [relative risk (RR): 10.1, 95% confidence interval (CI): 3.70-27.6], severe febrile illness (RR: 3.84, 95% CI: 2.06-7.17), severe diarrhea (RR: 6.37, 95% CI: 2.32-17.4) and severe malnutrition (RR: 18.4, 95% CI: 4.68-72.0). There were no differences between morbidity outcomes between breastfeeding HEU and HUU children, aged 6-11 months. In the 12-24 month age group, the only difference in morbidity outcomes among non-breast feeding children was an increased risk of severe malnutrition for HEU. These data suggest that the increased risk of morbidity among HEU aged 6-11 years is partially explained by early cessation of breastfeeding.Journal of Tropical Pediatrics 08/2014; · 0.86 Impact Factor