[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Untreated syphilis in pregnancy is associated with adverse clinical outcomes for the infant. Most syphilis infections occur in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), where coverage of antenatal screening for syphilis is inadequate. Recently introduced point-of-care syphilis tests have high accuracy and demonstrate potential to increase coverage of antenatal screening. However, country-specific cost-effectiveness data for these tests are limited. The objective of this analysis was to evaluate the cost-effectiveness and budget impact of antenatal syphilis screening for 43 countries in SSA and estimate the impact of universal screening on stillbirths, neonatal deaths, congenital syphilis, and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) averted.
The decision analytic model reflected the perspective of the national health care system and was based on the sensitivity (86%) and specificity (99%) reported for the immunochromatographic strip (ICS) test. Clinical outcomes of infants born to syphilis-infected mothers on the end points of stillbirth, neonatal death, and congenital syphilis were obtained from published sources. Treatment was assumed to consist of three injections of benzathine penicillin. Country-specific inputs included the antenatal prevalence of syphilis, annual number of live births, proportion of women with at least one antenatal care visit, per capita gross national income, and estimated hourly nurse wages. In all 43 sub-Saharan African countries analyzed, syphilis screening is highly cost-effective, with an average cost/DALY averted of US$11 (range: US$2-US$48). Screening remains highly cost-effective even if the average prevalence falls from the current rate of 3.1% (range: 0.6%-14.0%) to 0.038% (range: 0.002%-0.113%). Universal antenatal screening of pregnant women in clinics may reduce the annual number of stillbirths by up to 64,000, neonatal deaths by up to 25,000, and annual incidence of congenital syphilis by up to 32,000, and avert up to 2.6 million DALYs at an estimated annual direct medical cost of US$20.8 million.
Use of ICS tests for antenatal syphilis screening is highly cost-effective in SSA. Substantial reduction in DALYs can be achieved at a relatively modest budget impact. In SSA, antenatal programs should expand access to syphilis screening using the ICS test. Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary.
PLoS Medicine 11/2013; 10(11):e1001545. · 15.25 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) clinic in a setting of high tuberculosis (TB) and HIV prevalence.
To study the incidence of and factors associated with tuberculin skin test (TST) conversion in HIV patients on antiretroviral therapy (ART).
Prospective cohort study of TST-negative, ART-naïve HIV patients (CD4 cell count < 250 cells/l) without active TB. TST was repeated at 2 months and, if negative, at 6 months. TST positivity was defined as an induration of ≥5 mm. Clinical examination, chest X-ray and CD4 cell counts were performed at baseline and follow-up. Proportions and incidence of TST conversion were calculated, and logistic regression analyses were performed.
Of the 142 patients, 105 (75.5%) were females. The mean age was 35.9 years (standard deviation 8.1) and the median CD4 cell count was 119 cells/l (interquartile range 42168). The incidence of TST conversion was 30.2/100 person years (95%CI 19.546.8). Conversion was not associated with clinical, CD4 cell count or chest radiography findings.
A high incidence of TST conversion was observed, supporting the World Health Organization recommendation to provide isoniazid preventive therapy (IPT) to all HIV patients in high TB prevalence settings. If case-control programmes choose to provide IPT only to TST-positive patients, repeat TST should be considered following initiation of ART.
The international journal of tuberculosis and lung disease: the official journal of the International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease 03/2013; 17(3):336-41. · 2.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: There is a high incidence of tuberculosis (TB) early after antiretroviral treatment (ART) initiation. This historical cohort study evaluated the association of efavirenz (EFV) compared to nevirapine (NVP) with post-ART TB among patients initiated on first-line ART from 2005 to 2009 in a large, urban HIV clinic in Uganda. METHODS: Hazard ratios (HR) for developing TB were computed using multivariable Cox proportional hazards models with inverse weighting of the probability of being prescribed NVP or EFV (calculated by a multivariable logistic regression model), stratifying by baseline CD4 count. Adjustment for time-updated CD4 count, restriction of the analysis to patients remaining in follow-up and a TB free survival analysis were performed as sensitivity analyses. RESULTS: ART was initiated in 5797 patients; 66% were women with a mean age of 37 years (standard deviation, 9 years) and a median baseline CD4 count of 117 cells/mm(3) (interquartile range, 43, 182). Sixty percent (n=3484) were initiated on NVP and 40% (n=2313) on EFV. In the first 2 years of ART, 377 patients developed TB. The use of EFV compared to NVP was independently associated with higher TB incidence in patients with a baseline CD4 count <100 cells/mm(3) (HR 2.05 [95% CI 1.29-3.27], P=0.003), but not at higher CD4 counts (HR 0.71 [95% CI 0.39-1.31], P=0.428). These estimates were robust to all sensitivity analyses. CONCLUSIONS: There was a higher incidence of TB in patients with baseline CD4 counts <100 cells/mm(3) initiated on EFV compared to those initiated on NVP. Further research in a trial setting or a larger multi-site observational cohort is needed to confirm these findings.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In sub-Saharan Africa, a large proportion of HIV positive patients on antiretroviral therapy (ART) are lost to follow-up, some of whom are dead. The objective of this study was to validate methods used to correct mortality estimates for loss-to-follow-up using a cohort with complete death ascertainment.
Routinely collected data from HIV patients initiating first line antiretroviral therapy (ART) at the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) (Routine Cohort) was used. Three methods to estimate mortality after initiation were: 1) standard Kaplan-Meier estimation (uncorrected method) that uses passively observed data; 2) double-sampling methods by Frangakis and Rubin (F&R) where deaths obtained from patient tracing studies are given a higher weight than those passively ascertained; 3) Nomogram proposed by Egger et al. Corrected mortality estimates in the Routine Cohort, were compared with the estimates from the IDI research observational cohort (Research Cohort), which was used as the "gold-standard".
We included 5,633 patients from the Routine Cohort and 559 from the Research Cohort. Uncorrected mortality estimates (95% confidence interval ) in the Routine Cohort at 1, 2 and 3 years were 5.5% (4.9%-6.3%), 6.6% (5.9%-7.5%) and 7.4% (6.5%-8.5%), respectively. The F&R corrected estimates at 1, 2 and 3 years were 11.2% (5.8%-21.2%), 15.8% (9.9%-24.8%) and 18.5% (12.3% -27.2%) respectively. The estimates obtained from the Research Cohort were 15.6% (12.8%-18.9%), 17.5% (14.6%-21.0%) and 19.0% (15.3%-21.9%) at 1, 2 and 3 years respectively. Using the nomogram method in the Routine Cohort, the corrected programme-level mortality estimate in year 1 was 11.9% (8.0%-15.7%).
Mortality adjustments provided by the F&R and nomogram methods are adequate and should be employed to correct mortality for loss-to-follow-up in large HIV care centres in Sub-Saharan Africa.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(12):e83524. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The existing diagnostic algorithms for sputum smear-negative tuberculosis (TB) are complicated, time-consuming, and often difficult to implement. The decision to initiate TB treatment in resource-limited countries is often largely based on clinical predictors. We sought to determine the clinical predictors and accuracy of empiric TB treatment initiation in HIV-infected sputum smear-negative TB suspects using sputum culture as a reference standard.
Out-patient HIV-TB integrated urban clinic in Kampala, Uganda.
HIV-infected TB suspects were screened using sputum smear microscopy, and mycobacterial sputum liquid and solid cultures were performed. Smear results were made available to the clinician who made a clinical decision on empiric TB treatment initiation for sputum smear-negative patients. Clinic records were reviewed for patients whose sputum smears were negative to collect data on socio-demographics, TB symptomatology, chest X-ray findings, CD4 cell counts and TB treatment initiation.
Of 253 smear-negative TB suspects, 56% (142/253) were females, median age 38 IQR (31-44) years, with a median CD4 cell count of 291 IQR (150-482) cells/mm(3). Of the 85 (33.6%) smear-negative patients empirically initiated on TB treatment, 35.3% (n = 30) were sputum culture positive compared to only 18 (10.7%) of the 168 untreated patients (p<0.001). Abnormal chest X-ray [aOR 10.18, 95% CI (3.14-33.00), p<0.001] and advanced HIV clinical stage [aOR 3.92, 95% CI (1.20-12.85), p = 0.024] were significantly associated with empiric TB treatment initiation. The sensitivity and specificity of empiric TB treatment initiation in the diagnosis of TB in HIV-infected patients after negative smear microscopy was 62.5% and 73.7% respectively.
In resource-limited settings, clinically advanced HIV and abnormal chest X-ray significantly predict a clinical decision to empirically initiate TB treatment in smear-negative HIV-infected patients. Empiric TB treatment initiation correlates poorly with TB cultures. Affordable, accurate and rapid point-of-care diagnostics are needed in resource-limited settings to more accurately determine which HIV-infected TB suspects have smear-negative TB.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(9):e74023. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: There is conflicting data on long-term CD4 immune recovery after combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) in resource-limited settings. Virologic suppression is rarely documented in cohorts from sub-Saharan Africa so objective evidence of adherence is biologically unsubstantiated. We sought to investigate long-term patterns of immune recovery in Ugandan patients on ART with sustained viral suppression.
A prospective cohort of patients starting ART between April, 2004 and April, 2005 at the Infectious Diseases Institute with sustained viral suppression (viral load ≤400 copies/ml at month 6 and 12) while on first-line ART. Propensity scores were used to adjust for treatment allocation (nevirapine or efavirenz) at ART initiation. Data were analyzed using Kaplan Meier methods and cross-sectional time series regression.
Three hundred and fifty-six patients were included in the analysis.71.6% were female, 87% in WHO stage 3 or 4, median age was 37 years, (IQR:32-43), and median CD4 count was 108 cells/µL, (IQR:35-174) at ART start. At multivariable analysis, lower immune recovery (measured by change in CD4 from ART start at each time interval) was associated with male-gender (-59, 95% CI: 90, -28, P<0.001), baseline CD4 count of 101-200 cells/µL (-35, 95% CI: 62, -9, P=0.009) and >200 (-64, 95% CI: 101, -26, P=0.001), and use of AZT at baseline (-47, 95% CI: -74, -20, P=0.001). Median time to reach >400 cells/µL was longer in males (197.4 weeks, IQR:119.9-312.0), compared to females (144.7 weeks, IQR:96.6-219.7, P<0.001). The cumulative probability of attaining CD4 >400 cells/µL over 7 years was higher in females compared to males (P<0.001).
There was long-term, continuous, immunologic recovery up to 7 years after ART initiation in an urban Ugandan cohort. Virologically suppressed women had better sustained immune recovery than men. Men take longer to immune reconstitute and have a lower probability of reaching a CD4 cell count >400 cells/µL. The biologic mechanisms of these gender differences need further exploration.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(8):e73190. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Light emitting diode (LED) fluorescence microscopy (FM) is an affordable, technology targeted for use in resource-limited settings and recommended for widespread roll-out by the World Health Organization (WHO). We sought to compare the operational performance of three LED FM methods compared to light microscopy in a cohort of HIV-positive tuberculosis (TB) suspects at an urban clinic in a high TB burden country.
Two spot specimens collected from TB suspects were included in the study. Smears were stained using auramine O method and read after blinding by three LED-based FM methods by trained laboratory technicians in the Infectious Diseases Institutelaboratory. Leftover portions of the refrigerated sputum specimens were transported to the FIND Tuberculosis Research Laboratory for Ziehl Neelsen (ZN) smear preparation and reading by experienced technologist as well as liquid and solid culture.
174 of 627 (27.8%) specimens collected yielded one or more positive mycobacterial cultures. 94.3% (164/174) were M. tuberculosis complex. LED FM was between 7.3-11.0% more sensitive compared to ZN microscopy. Of the 592 specimens examined by all microscopy methods, there was no significant difference in sensitivity between the three LED FM methods. The specificity of the LED FM methods was between 6.1% and 7.7% lower than ZN microscopy (P<0.001), although exclusion of the single poor reader resulted in over 98% specificity for all FM methods.
Laboratory technicians in routine settings can be trained to use FM which is more sensitive than ZN microscopy. Despite rigorous proficiency testing, there were operator-dependent accuracy issues which highlight the critical need for intensive quality assurance procedures during LED FM implementation. The low sensitivity of FM for HIV-positive individuals particularly those with low CD4 T cell counts, will limit the number of additional patients found by LED FM in countries with high rates of HIV co-infection.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(9):e72556. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Viral load monitoring (VLM) to identify individuals failing antiretroviral therapy (ART) is not widely available in resource-limited settings. We compared the genotypic resistance patterns between clients with VLM versus immunological monitoring (IM). METHODS: Between 2004--2008, 559 ART naive clients were enrolled in a prospective cohort, initiated on ART, and monitored with viral load (VL) and CD4+ cell counts every 6 months (VLM group). From February 2008 through June 2009, 998 clients on ART for 36--40 months (corresponding to the follow-up time of the VLM group) at the same clinic and monitored with CD4+ cell counts every 6 months were recruited into a cross sectional study (IM group). Samples from VLM clients at 12, 24 and 36 months and IM clients at 36--40 months with VL > 2000 copies/ml underwent genotypic drug resistance testing. RESULTS: Baseline characteristics were similar. Virologic failure (VL > 400 copies/ml) at 12, 24 and 36 months in the VLM group were 12%, 6% and 8% respectively, and in the IM group 10% at 36--40 months. Samples from 39 VLM and 70 IM clients were genotyped. 23/39 (59%) clients in the VLM group (at 12, 24 or 36 months) compared to 63/70 (90%) in the IM group, (P < 0.0001) had at least 1 non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase mutation. 19/39 (49%) of VLM clients had an M184V mutation compared to 61/70 (87%) in the IM group (P < 0.0001). Only 2/39 (5%) of VLM clients developed thymidine analogue mutations compared to 34/70 (49%) of IM clients (P < 0.0001). CONCLUSIONS: Routine VL monitoring reduced the rate of accumulated genotypic resistance to commonly used ART in Uganda.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Use of multivitamin supplements during the pre-HAART era has been found to reduce viral load, enhance immune response, and generally improve clinical outcomes among HIV-infected adults. However, immune reconstitution is incomplete and significant mortality and opportunistic infections occur in spite of HAART. There is insufficient research information on whether multivitamin supplementation may be beneficial as adjunct therapy for HIV-infected individuals taking HAART. We propose to evaluate the efficacy of a single recommended daily allowance (RDA) of micronutrients (including vitamins B-complex, C, and E) in slowing disease progression among HIV-infected adults receiving HAART in Uganda. METHODS: We are using a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial study design. Eligible patients are HIV-positive adults aged at least 18 years, and are randomized to receive either a placebo; or multivitamins that include a single RDA of the following vitamins: 1.4 mg B1, 1.4 mg B2, 1.9 mg B6, 2.6 mcg B12, 18 mg niacin, 70 mg C, 10 mg E, and 0.4 mg folic acid. Participants are followed for up to 18 months with evaluations at baseline, 6, 12 and 18 months. The study is primarily powered to examine the effects on immune reconstitution, weight gain, and quality of life. In addition, we will examine the effects on other secondary outcomes including the risks of development of new or recurrent disease progression event, including all-cause mortality; ARV regimen change from first- to second-line therapy; and other adverse events as indicated by incident peripheral neuropathy, severe anemia, or diarrhea.DiscussionsThe conduct of this trial provides an opportunity to evaluate the potential benefits of this affordable adjunct therapy (multivitamin supplementation) among HIV-infected adults receiving HAART in a developing country setting.Trial registrationClinical Trial Registration-URL: www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01228578.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objectives To investigate whether an unrecognised diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB) at the start of antiretroviral therapy (ART) influences subsequent CD4+ T cell (CD4) count recovery in an urban HIV clinic in Uganda. Methods In a retrospective cohort study, a multivariable polynomial mixed effects model was used to estimate CD4 recovery in the first 96 weeks of ART in two groups of patients: prevalent TB (started ART while on TB treatment), unrecognised TB (developed TB within 6 months after start ART). Results Included were 511 patients with a median baseline CD4 count of 57 cells/mm(3) (interquartile range: 22-130), of whom 368 (72%) had prevalent TB and 143 (28%) had unrecognised TB. Compared with prevalent TB, unrecognised TB was associated with lower CD4 count recovery at 96 weeks: -22.3 cells/mm(3) (95% confidence interval -43.2 to -1.5, P = 0.036). These estimates were adjusted for gender, age, baseline CD4 count and the use of zidovudine-based regimen. Conclusions Unrecognised TB at the time of ART initiation resulted in impaired CD4 recovery compared with TB treated before ART initiation. More vigilant screening with more sensitive and rapid TB diagnostics prior to ART initiation is needed to decrease the risk of ART-associated TB and sub-optimal immune reconstitution.
Tropical Medicine & International Health 11/2012; · 2.94 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Ugandan national guidelines recommend initiation of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) at CD4+ T cell (CD4) count below 350cell/mul, but the implementation of this is limited due to availability of medication. However, cART initiation at higher CD4 count increases survival, albeit at higher lifetime treatment cost. This analysis evaluates the cost-effectiveness of initiating cART at a CD4 count between 250--350cell/mul (early) versus <250cell/mul (delayed). METHODS: Life expectancy of cART-treated patients, conditional on baseline CD4 count, was modeled based on published literature. First-line cART costs $192 annually, with an additional $113 for patient monitoring. Delaying initiation of cART until the CD4 count falls below 250cells/mul would incur the cost of the bi-annual CD4 count tests and routine maintenance care at $85 annually. We compared lifetime treatment costs and disability adjusted life-expectancy between early vs. delayed cART for ten baseline CD4 count ranges from 250-350cell/mul. All costs and benefits were discounted at 3 % annually. RESULTS: Treatment delay varied from 6--18 months. Early cART initiation increased life expectancy from 1.5-3.5 years and averted 1.33--3.10 disability adjusted life years (DALY's) per patient. Lifetime treatment costs were $4,300--$5,248 for early initiation and $3,940--$4,435 for delayed initiation. The cost/DALY averted of the early versus delayed start ranged from $260--$270. CONCLUSIONS: In HIV-positive patients presenting with CD4 count between 250-350cells/mul, immediate initiation of cART is a highly cost-effective strategy using the recommended one-time per capita GDP threshold of $490 reported for Uganda. This would constitute an efficient use of scarce health care funds.
BMC Public Health 09/2012; 12(1):736. · 2.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Increased detection of tuberculosis (TB) using intensified or active case finding (ICF) is one of the cornerstones of the Stop TB Strategy, and contrasts with passive case finding (PCF) which relies on self-reported symptoms. There is no clear guidance on implementation strategies. We implemented ICF in addition to ongoing PCF in our large urban HIV clinic in July 2010 using a twice-daily announcement screen method by a trained peer educator, asking waiting patients to self-refer to a trained peer supporter for screening of TB symptoms. We sought to determine the associated effect on TB case detection. METHODS: Suspects were investigated by sputum smear, chest X-ray and ultrasound, if indicated. Routinely collected clinical and laboratory data were merged with the ICF register and TB clinic data for patients attending the clinic in 2010. We compared the yield of TB cases (defined as the prevalence of newly diagnosed TB cases in the screened population), the type of TB diagnosed and the total cost per TB case identified (in United States Dollars [USD]) for the period before and after ICF implementation. RESULTS: Of the 20,456 patients who visited the clinic in 2010, 614 were identified as TB suspects, 220 pre-ICF and 394 post-ICF (229 via PCF and 165 via ICF). The proportion diagnosed with TB dropped from 66% to 48% (60% in suspects identified through PCF and 31% through ICF). During the post-ICF period, TB suspects identified through ICF compared to PCF identification were more likely to be female, older, on ART and to have been enrolled in HIV care for a longer duration. The yield of combined PCF and ICF screening was 1.4% pre-ICF and 1.7% post-ICF with a cost per TB case identified of 12.29 USD and 21.80 USD, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Implementation of ICF in a large HIV clinic yielded more TB suspects and cases, but substantially increased costs and was unable to capture the majority of TB suspects who were referred for diagnosis by clinicians through PCF. The overall yield of TB cases in a mature HIV clinic was low, although targeted screening of those recently enrolled in care may increase the yield.
BMC Public Health 08/2012; 12(1):674. · 2.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To model the cost-effectiveness in Uganda of combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) to prevent mother-to-child transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
The cost-effectiveness of ART was evaluated on the assumption that ART reduces the risk of an HIV-positive pregnant woman transmitting HIV to her baby from 40% (when the woman is left untreated) to 25.8%, 17.4% and 3.8%, respectively, when the woman is given: (i) single-dose nevirapine (at an estimated total drug cost of 0.06 United States dollars [US$]); (ii) dual therapy with zidovudine and lamivudine for 7 weeks (at a total drug cost of US$ 15.63); or (iii) ART for 18 months (at a total annual cost of US$ 469.77). Lifetime ART (US$ 6883), recommended for pregnant women with < 350 CD4+ T lymphocytes per mm(3), was assumed to give the same reduction in transmission risk in each subsequent pregnancy.
Compared with single-dose nevirapine, dual therapy and no therapy, 18 months of ART averted 5.21, 3.22 and 8.58 disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), respectively, at a cost of US$ 46, US$ 99 and US$ 34 per DALY averted. The corresponding figures for lifetime ART are, respectively, 19.20, 11.87 and 31.60 DALYs averted, at a cost of US$ 205, US$ 354 and US$ 172 per DALY averted.
In Uganda, ART appears highly cost-effective for the prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission, even if continued over the patients' lifetimes. Given the additional public health benefits of ART, efforts to ensure that all HIV-positive pregnant women have access to lifelong ART should be intensified.
Bulletin of the World Health Organisation 08/2012; 90(8):595-603. · 5.25 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The objectives of this study were to examine the association of the on-treatment CD4 cell count with late mortality (after >6 months of antiretroviral treatment [ART]) and to identify the determinants of the long-term CD4 cell count evolution after treatment initiation. We conducted a retrospective analysis including all antiretroviral (ARV)-naïve adults initiating ART in a tertiary hospital in Phnom Penh, Cambodia from 2003–2010. We used Cox proportional hazards modelling (mortality analysis), including time-updated CD4 counts, and mixed-effects modelling (CD4 response over time). Overall, 2840 patients were included (47% male, median age: 34 years, median baseline CD4 count: 78 cells/μL). The median time on ART was 2.5 years (IQR 1.1-4.3); 71 patients died after >6 months of ART. The baseline CD4 count was the main determinant of the on-treatment CD4 cell count. Time-updated CD4 cell counts was the strongest determinant of late mortality with a HR of 0.32 (95% CI 0.16–0.63) and 0.29 (95% CI 0.11–0.71) for CD4 values of 200–350 cells/μL and 350–500 cells/μL respectively. We conclude that baseline CD4 counts strongly determine the long-term immune recovery, which critically affects late mortality. This calls for increased efforts for early ART initiation and availability of CD4 count testing in low-income countries.
Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 03/2012; 106(5):328-9. · 1.82 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The World Health Organization recommends that treatment of tuberculosis (TB) in HIV-infected patients should be integrated with HIV care. In December 2008, a separate outdoor-integrated TB/HIV clinic was instituted for attendees of a large urban HIV clinic in Uganda. We sought to evaluate associated TB and HIV treatment outcomes.
Routinely collected clinical, pharmacy, and laboratory data were merged with TB clinic data for patients initiating TB treatment in 2009 and with TB register data for patients in 2007. TB treatment outcomes and (timing of) antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation in ART-naive patients [overall and stratified by CD4+ T cell (CD4) count] in 2007 and 2009 were compared. Nosocomial transmission rates could not be assessed.
Three hundred forty-six patients were initiated on TB treatment in 2007 and 366 in 2009. Median CD4 counts at TB diagnosis did not differ. TB treatment cure or completion increased from 62% to 68%, death or default decreased from 33% to 25% (P < 0.001). Fewer ART-naive TB patients were initiated on ART in 2009 versus 2007 (57% and 66%, P = 0.031), but this decrease was only in patients with CD4 counts >250 cells per cubic millimeter (19% vs. 48%, P = 0.003). More patients were started on ART during TB treatment (94% vs. 78%, P < 0.001). Moreover, the majority were now initiated during intensive phase (60% vs. 23%, P < 0.001).
Integration of TB and HIV care has led to improved TB treatment outcomes and earlier, prioritized ART initiation. This supports rollout of a fully integrated TB/HIV service delivery model throughout high-prevalence TB and HIV settings.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: High early mortality after antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation in resource-limited settings is associated with low baseline CD4 cell counts and a high burden of opportunistic infections. Our large urban HIV clinic in Uganda has made concerted efforts to initiate ART at higher CD4 cell counts and to improve diagnosis and care of patients coinfected with tuberculosis (TB). We sought to determine associated treatment outcomes.
Routinely collected data for all patients who initiated ART from 2005 to 2009 were analysed. Median baseline CD4 cell counts by year of ART initiation were compared using the Cuzick test for trend. Mortality and TB incidence rates in the first year of ART were computed. Hazard ratios (HRs) were calculated using multivariable Cox proportional hazards models.
First-line ART was initiated in 7659 patients; 64% were women, and the mean age was 37 years (standard deviation 9 years). Median baseline CD4 counts increased from 2005 to 2009 [82 cells/μL (interquartile range (IQR) 24, 153) to 148 cells/μL (IQR 61, 197), respectively; P<0.001]. The mortality rate fell from 6.5/100 person-years at risk (PYAR) [95% confidence interval (CI) 5.5-7.6 PYAR] to 3.6/100 PYAR (95% CI 2.2-5.8 PYAR). TB incidence rates increased from 8.2/100 PYAR (95% CI 7.1-9.5 PYAR) to 15.6/100 PYAR (95% CI 12.4-19.7 PYAR). A later year of ART initiation was independently associated with decreased mortality (HR 0.91; 95% CI 0.83-1.00; P=0.04).
Baseline CD4 cell counts have increased over time and are associated with decreased mortality. Additional reductions in mortality might be a result of a better standard of care and increased TB case finding. Further efforts to initiate ART earlier should be prioritized even in a setting of capped or reduced funding for ART programmes.
HIV Medicine 02/2012; 13(6):337-44. · 3.16 Impact Factor
The international journal of tuberculosis and lung disease: the official journal of the International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease 02/2012; 16(2):280; author reply 280-1. · 2.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We compared the performance of the WHO immunologic criteria for treatment failure among Uganda and American patients. Antiretroviral treatment-naive patients with a CD4 T-cell count less than 200 cells/μl or AIDS at enrollment on a nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors-based regimen for more than 1 year were selected. For all criteria, the positive predictive value was significantly higher in the American compared with the Ugandan patients. Population-specific guidelines should be developed using large African cohorts to identify more specific and sensitive criteria.
AIDS (London, England) 01/2012; 26(6):768-70. · 4.91 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Accurate, inexpensive point-of-care CD4+ T cell testing technologies are needed that can deliver CD4+ T cell results at lower level health centers or community outreach voluntary counseling and testing. We sought to evaluate a point-of-care CD4+ T cell counter, the Pima CD4 Test System, a portable, battery-operated bench-top instrument that is designed to use finger stick blood samples suitable for field use in conjunction with rapid HIV testing.
Duplicate measurements were performed on both capillary and venous samples using Pima CD4 analyzers, compared to the BD FACSCalibur (reference method). The mean bias was estimated by paired Student's t-test. Bland Altman plots were used to assess agreement.
206 participants were enrolled with a median CD4 count of 396 (range; 18-1500). The finger stick PIMA had a mean bias of -66.3 cells/µL (95%CI -83.4-49.2, P<0.001) compared to the FACSCalibur; the bias was smaller at lower CD4 counts (0-250 cells/µL) with a mean bias of -10.8 (95%CI -27.3-+5.6, P = 0.198), and much greater at higher CD4 cell counts (>500 cells/µL) with a mean bias of -120.6 (95%CI -162.8, -78.4, P<0.001). The sensitivity (95%CI) of the Pima CD4 analyzer was 96.3% (79.1-99.8%) for a <250 cells/ul cut-off with a negative predictive value of 99.2% (95.1-99.9%).
The Pima CD4 finger stick test is an easy-to-use, portable, relatively fast device to test CD4+ T cell counts in the field. Issues of negatively-biased CD4 cell counts especially at higher absolute numbers will limit its utility for longitudinal immunologic response to ART. The high sensitivity and negative predictive value of the test makes it an attractive option for field use to identify patients eligible for ART, thus potentially reducing delays in linkage to care and ART initiation.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(4):e34319. · 3.73 Impact Factor