Late HIV diagnosis and delay in CD4 count measurement among HIV-infected patients in Southern Thailand

Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University (PSU), Songkla, Thailand.
AIDS Care (Impact Factor: 1.6). 03/2008; 20(1):43-50. DOI: 10.1080/09540120701439303
Source: PubMed


The objectives of this study were to evaluate timeliness of HIV testing and of getting CD4 count measured and their associated factors in Southern Thailand. Between July 2004 and February 2005, consenting HIV-positive patients from seven public hospitals in Songkhla province, Southern Thailand were interviewed. Outcomes were late HIV diagnosis (having HIV-related symptoms at the time of first positive test) and the time between HIV diagnosis and first CD4 count being measured. Of 402 study patients, 55% were late HIV-diagnosed. Factors independently associated with late HIV diagnosis were age above 30 years, male and being unemployed with respective odd ratios (95% CI) of 3.10 (1.90-5.07), 7.95 (4.52-13.99), and 2.14 (1.22-3.76). Only 34% and 47% received CD4 assessment within 6 and 12 months of HIV diagnosis, respectively. Median of first-known CD4 count was 73 (IQR 16-169) and 22 (IQR 9-85) cells/microl among asymptomatic and symptomatic HIV-diagnosed patients, respectively. Common predictors for shortened delay of CD4 count measured among symptomatic and asymptomatic HIV-diagnosed patients were: infection through sexual contact (HR=1.61; 95%CI 1.12-2.33) and receiving posttest counseling (HR 1.71; 95%CI 1.15-2.52). Among the asymptomatic, those aged >25-30 years had significantly shortened delay (HR=2.18; 95%CI 1.50-3.18) compared with the younger age group as did those aged >30 years (HR=1.94; 95%CI 1.32-2.85). Such age effect on the delay was absent in the symptomatic group. Attempts to diagnose HIV at an earlier stage and timely CD4 count measured are needed.

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    • "Although differing in their methodological approaches [31], studies of late entry into HIV care have provided, for different contexts, a broad range of estimates of the proportion of such late entry and have identified different associated risk factors [16,19-23,32]. Therefore, there is a need for further knowledge about the absolute risk of late entry, both at the population level and in social segments exposed to certain risk factors (such as advanced age, male gender, and a low level of local economic development). "
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    ABSTRACT: To ascertain the population rates and proportion of late entry into HIV care, as well as to determine whether such late entry correlates with individual and contextual factors. Data for the 2003-2006 period in Brazil were obtained from public health records. A case of late entry into HIV care was defined as one in which HIV infection was diagnosed at death, one in which HIV infection was diagnosed after the condition of the patient had already been aggravated by AIDS-related diseases, or one in which the CD4(+) T-cell count was ≤ 200 cells/mm(3) at the time of diagnosis. We also considered extended and stricter sets of criteria (in which the final criterion was ≤ 350 cells/mm(3) and ≤ 100 cells/mm(3), respectively). The estimated risk ratio was used in assessing the effects of correlates, and the population rates (per 100,000 population) were calculated on an annual basis. Records of 115,369 HIV-infected adults were retrieved, and 43.6% (50,358) met the standard criteria for late entry into care. Diagnosis at death accounted for 29% (14,457) of these cases. Late entry into HIV care (standard criterion) was associated with certain individual factors (sex, age, and transmission category) and contextual factors (region with less economic development/increasing incidence of AIDS, lower local HIV testing rate, and smaller municipal population). Use of the extended criteria increased the proportion of late entry by 34% but did not substantially alter the correlations analyzed. The overall population rate of late entry was 9.9/100,000 population, specific rates being highest for individuals in the 30-59 year age bracket, for men, and for individuals living in regions with greater economic development/higher HIV testing rates, collectively accounting for more than half of the cases observed. Although the high proportion of late entry might contribute to spreading the AIDS epidemic in less developed regions, most cases occurred in large cities, with broader availability of HIV testing, and in economically developed regions.
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    • "Non-pregnant women at HIV diagnosis were significantly associated with late presentation to HIV/AIDS care which is consistent with the studies done in Uganda [8], and Thailand [11]. The lower likelihood of pregnant women presenting late to HIV/AIDS care could be explained by the current programs to routinely offer HIV testing and treatment for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission in antenatal clinics are successfully linking most HIV-infected women with HIV/AIDS care. "
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    ABSTRACT: An HIV outbreak among Finnish injecting drug users (IDUs) occurred in 1998. By the end of 2005, 282 IDUs were in-fected, most of them by recombinant virus CRF01_AE of HIV. After a rapid spread, the outbreak subsided, and the prevalence of HIV among IDUs remained low (<2%). The purpose of the study was to describe the outbreak in order to recognise factors that have influenced the spread and restriction of the outbreak, and thus to find tools for HIV preven-tion. Data on Finnish IDUs newly diagnosed HIV-positive between 1998 and 2005 was collected through interviews and patient documents. Study I compared markers of disease progression between 93 Finnish IDUs and 63 Dutch IDUs. In study II, geographical spread of the HIV outbreak was examined and compared with the spatial distribution of employed males. In study III, risk behaviour data from interviews of 89 HIV-positive and 207 HIV-negative IDUs was linked, and prevalence and risk factors for unprotected sex were evaluated. In study IV, data on 238 newly diagnosed IDUs was combined with data on 675 sexually transmitted HIV cases, and risk factors for late HIV diagnosis (CD4 cell count <200/µL, or AIDS at HIV diagnosis) were analysed. Finnish IDUs infected with CRF01_AE exhibited higher viral loads than did Amsterdam IDUs infected with subtype B, but there was no difference in CD4 development. The Finnish IDU outbreak spread and was restricted socially in a marginalised IDU population and geographically in areas characterised by low proportions of employed males. Up to 40% of the cases in the two clusters outside the city centre had no contact with the centre, where needle exchange services were available since 1997. Up to 63% of HIV-positive and 80% of HIV-negative sexually active IDUs reported inconsistent condom use, which was associated with steady relationships and recent inpatient addiction care. Com-pared to other transmission groups, HIV-positive IDUs were diagnosed earlier in their infection. The proportion of late diagnosed HIV cases in all transmission groups was 23%, but was only 6% among IDUs diagnosed during the first four years of the epidemic. The high viral load in early HIV infection may have contributed to the rapid spread of recombinant virus in the Finnish outbreak. The outbreak was restricted to a marginalised IDU population, and limited spatially to local pockets of pov-erty. To prevent HIV among IDUs, these pockets should be recognised and reached early through outreach work and the distribution of needle exchange and other prevention activities. To prevent the sexual transmission of HIV among IDUs, prevention programmes should be combined with addiction care services and targeted at every IDU. The early detection of the outbreak and early implementation of needle exchange programmes likely played a crucial role in re-versing the IDU outbreak. Pistoshuumeiden käyttäjien HIV-epidemia todettiin pääkaupunkiseudulla vuonna 1998. Epidemia levisi aluksi nopeasti, mutta myös rajoittui muutamassa vuodessa. Tutkimuksen tavoitteena oli tunnistaa tekijöitä, jotka vaikuttivat epidemian leviämiseen ja rajoittumiseen, ja siten löytää keinoja HIV-epidemian ennaltaehkäisyyn. Aineisto käsitti 238 HIV-tartunnan saanutta pistoshuumeidenkäyttäjää, joiden tietoja verrattiin hollantilaisista HIV-positiivisista ja suomalaisista HIV-negatiivisista huumeidenkäyttäjistä kerättyihin tietoihin, miesten työllisyyslukujen alueelliseen jakaumaan ja pääkaupunkiseudun seksivälitteisiin HIV-tartuntoihin. HIV-epidemia levisi syrjäytyneiden pistoshuumeiden käyttäjien keskuudessa. Kaikki Helsingin keskustan ulkopuolella sijaitsevat huumeidenkäyttäjien rypäät sijaitsivat alueilla, joissa miesten työllisyysluvut olivat alle 70%. Muissa tutkimuksissa on osoitettu puhtaiden pistosvälineiden saatavuuden estävän HIV:n leviämistä. Pääkaupunkiseudun epidemiassa 40% keskustan ulkopuolella asuvista huumeidenkäyttäjistä jäi pistosvälineiden vaihdon ja terveysneuvonnan ulkopuolelle, koska heillä ei ollut yhteyksiä keskustaan, jossa terveysneuvonta ja pistosvälineiden vaihto aloitettin juuri ennen epidemiaa. Suomessa levinnyt viruksen alatyyppi (CRF01_AEfin) edesauttoi epidemian leviämistä, sillä suomalaisilla huumeidenkäyttäjillä todettiin korkeampia veren viruspitoisuuksia kuin hollantilaisilla B-alatyypin viruksella infektoituneilla huumeidenkäyttäjillä. Veren korkea viruspitoisuus lisää tartuttavuutta. HIV ei levinnyt ydinjoukon ulkopuolelle eikä uusille alueille. Epidemian rajoittumiseen vaikutti todennäköisesti sen varhainen toteaminen terveysneuvonnan kehittymisen ohella. Huumeidenkäyttäjien HIV-tartunnoista 1998-2001 vain 6% todettiin myöhäisessä vaiheessa (veren CD4-solut alle 200/µL tai AIDS-vaiheessa), kun kaikista pääkaupunkiseudun HIV-tartunnoista 23% todettiin myöhään. Yli puolet huumeidenkäyttäjien tartunnoista todettiin vankiloissa, päihdehoidossa tai terveysneuvontapisteissä; paikoissa joissa HIV-testiä tarjotaan aktiivisesti. HIV voi yhä levitä huumeiden käyttäjien keskuudessa joko pistämisen tai seksin välityksellä. Suojaamaton seksi on yleistä sekä HIV-positiivisten että HIV-negatiivisten huumeiden käyttäjien keskuudessa, etenkin vakituisissa suhteissa ja hiljattain päihdehoitoa tarvinneilla. Seksuaaliterveyden neuvontaa tulisi tarjota kaikille huumeidenkäyttäjille ja heidän seksikumppaneilleen. Terveysneuvonnan alueellinen hajauttaminen ja kohdistettu etsivä työ ovat avainasemassa huumeidenkäyttäjien HIV-tartuntojen toteamiseksi varhain ja epidemioiden ehkäisemiseksi.
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