Background: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) are health problems with infected individuals frequently manifesting some abnormalities including significant weight loss. This has been associated withtumor necrosis factor alpha and interleukin 1β production by circulating mononuclear white blood cells in patients with HIV infection andaltered metabolism due to cytokine dysregulation and metabolic demands of antiretroviral medication.
Objective: To determine the changes in anthropometric variables 6 months after initiation of antiretroviral therapy in HIV infected subjects.
Materials and methods: The study was a longitudinal study involving 150 newly diagnosed, drugnaïve HIVpositive subjects who met the criteria for initiating antiretroviral therapy.They had their anthropometric measurements inclusive of weight, body mass index, waist circumference, hip circumference,mid upper arm circumference and skinfold thickness determined before initiating the medications.These patients were followed up and the same measurements repeated 2 monthly for 6 months Data analysis was by SPSS version 2.0 using frequency and paired sample T test.Significance of differences was set at P<0.05.
Results: Sixteen subjects were lost to follow up by the end of 6 months.In our study, 80% gained weight, 15.5% had a stable weight and 4.5% lost weight.The table below summarizes the anthropometric changes after 6 months.There were statistically significant increase in the mean of the variables determined at 6 months.
Conclusion: Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART) as treatment for HIV/AIDS in addition to reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with the disease,also improves wellbeing by restoration of weight loss.
|Variables||Baseline (mean +S.D.)||6month (mean +S.D.)||P value|
|Waist circumference (cm)||81.46+11.72||86.32+12.37||0.02|
|Hip circumference (cm)||98.09+9.79||102.65+10.18||0.04|
|Mid upper arm circumference (cm)||28.7+4.74||34.3+6.15||0.012|
|Mid thigh circumference (cm)||50.26+7.56||56.62+8.76||0.023|