The benefit of supplementary feeding for wasted Malawian adults initiating ART.
ABSTRACT Food insecurity is considered to be an important contributor to HIV associated wasting in sub-Saharan Africa. Low body mass index (BMI) is a strong risk factor for early mortality during antiretroviral therapy (ART). Nutritional supplementation has become standard of care in wasted patients starting ART in many countries in the region, but there is no unequivocal evidence base for this intervention. Against this background, we performed a retrospective study to compare food supplementation versus no nutritional intervention in wasted adults starting ART in Blantyre, Malawi. All patients received free nevirapine, lamivudine, and stavudine. Participants in an effectiveness trial of two food supplements received either corn-soy blend (CSB) or ready-to-use food spread (RUFS) during the first 14 weeks of ART. Results were compared with a historical control group receiving no food supplement that was part of an observational cohort study of outcomes of the same ART regimen. Characteristics on initiation of ART were similar in the three groups, except the use of cotrimoxazole prophylaxis which was more frequent in the food-supplemented groups. Linear regression analysis showed that increase in BMI was greatest in the RUFS group and better in the CSB group than in those receiving no food supplementation at 14 weeks. These differences were no longer significant at 26 weeks. Lower BMI, CD4 count and hemoglobin, WHO clinical stage IV, male gender, and not receiving cotrimoxazole prophylaxis were independent risk factors for mortality at 14 and 26 weeks in the logistic regression analysis. Supplementary food use was not directly associated with improved survival.
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ABSTRACT: Background. The epidemics of food insecurity, malnutrition, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) frequently overlap. HIV treatment programs increasingly provide nutrient-dense ready-to-use supplementary foods (RUSFs) to patients living with HIV and food insecurity, but in the absence of wasting, it is not known if RUSF confers benefit above less costly food commodities. Methods. We performed a randomized trial in rural Haiti comparing an RUSF with less costly corn-soy blend plus (CSB+) as a monthly supplement to patients with HIV infection who were on antiretroviral therapy (ART) <24 months prior to study start. We compared 6- and 12-month outcomes by ration type in terms of immunologic response, body mass index (BMI), adherence to ART, general health quality of life, household food insecurity, and household wealth. Results. A cohort of 524 patients with HIV receiving ART was randomized and followed over time. Median CD4 cell count at baseline was 339 cells/µL (interquartile range [IQR], 197-475 cells/µL) for the CSB+ group, and 341 cells/µL (IQR, 213-464/µL) for the RUSF group. Measured outcomes improved from baseline over time, but there were no statistically significant differences in change for BMI, household wealth index, hunger, general health perception score, or adherence to ART by ration type at 6 or 12 months. The RUSF group had higher CD4 count at 12 months, but this was also not statistically significant. Conclusions. In 12 months of follow-up, there was no statistically significant difference in outcomes between those receiving RUSF-based compared with CSB+-based rations in a cohort of HIV-infected adults on ART in rural Haiti.Clinical Infectious Diseases 02/2014; · 9.37 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Abstract Poor nutritional status at initiation of antiretroviral therapy (ART) is predictive of mortality. Decreased dietary intake is a major determinant of weight loss in HIV. Despite a biological rationale to treat undernutrition in adults receiving ART, few studies have provided data on feasibility, safety, effectiveness, and sustainability of specific macronutrient supplements with HIV treatment in adults, especially supplements such as a food basket, a supplement approach seldom evaluated in spite of its wide use. We present the rationale and design for a study of a locally procured macronutrient supplement given to HIV-infected patients initiating ART with a body mass index (BMI) ≤20.0 kg/m(2). The objective was to determine feasibility of procurement, distribution, safety and to obtain preliminary effectiveness data for a locally procured supplement. The design was a comparative study for 200 adult participants at two Kenya government-supported clinics. The primary outcome was BMI at 24 weeks. Supplement duration was 24 weeks, total follow-up was 48 weeks, and the study included a comparison site. Novel aspects of this study include use of a standardized macronutrient supplement to protect the participant against household food sharing, and a complementary micronutrient supplement. Comprehensive data collected included dietary intake, HIV-related quality-of-life, food security, neuropsychiatric assessments, laboratory studies, and household geomapping. Assessments were made at baseline, at 24 weeks, and at 48 weeks post-ART initiation. Challenges included establishing a partnership with local millers, distribution from the HIV clinic, food safety, and tracking of participants. These findings will help inform nutrition support programming in Kenya and similar settings, and provide needed data regarding use of macronutrient supplements as an adjunctive intervention with ART.AIDS Care 01/2013; · 1.60 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Ready-to-use supplementary foods (RUSF) are used increasingly in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) programs, but little is known about how it is used and viewed by patients. We used qualitative methods to explore the use, perceptions, and acceptability of RUSF among adult HIV patients in Jimma, Ethiopia. The study obtained data from direct observations and 24 in-depth interviews with HIV patients receiving RUSF. Participants were generally very motivated to take RUSF and viewed it as beneficial. RUSF was described as a means to fill a nutritional gap, to "rebuild the body," and protect it from harmful effects of antiretroviral treatment (ART). Many experienced nausea and vomiting when starting the supplement. This caused some to stop supplementation, but the majority adapted to RUSF. The supplement was eaten separately from meal situations and only had a little influence on household food practices. RUSF was described as food with "medicinal qualities," which meant that many social and religious conventions related to food did not apply to it. The main concerns about RUSF related to the risk of HIV disclosure and its social consequences. HIV patients view RUSF in a context of competing livelihood needs. RUSF intake was motivated by a strong wish to get well, while the risk of HIV disclosure caused concerns. Despite the motivation for improving health, the preservation of social networks was prioritized, and nondisclosure was often a necessary strategy. Food sharing and religious fasting practices were not barriers to the acceptability of RUSF. This study highlights the importance of ensuring that supplementation strategies, like other HIV services, are compatible with the sociocultural context of patients.Patient Preference and Adherence 01/2013; 7:481-8. · 1.33 Impact Factor