Kemebradikumo Pondei and Ebidor Lawani
HIV and tuberculosis are still healthcare problems in sub-Saharan Africa, with co-infection being common and having varying rates across Africa. This study prospectively analyzed the prevalence of TB among subjects sent for TB screening, and the pr evalence of HIV infection among these patients. Smears were prepared from sputum samples and staine d by the Ziehl-Neelsen method to detect acid- fast bacilli (AFB). Patients were termed TB positiv e if at least two out of three smears were positive for AFB. HIV testing was offered to subjects who were u naware of their HIV statuses. Screening for HIV was done using ELISA kits and confirmed by Western blot . Out of 1047 subjects screened for TB, 126 subjects (12.03%; 95% CI: 10.06% - 14%) were positi ve for TB. There was a slight male preponderance of TB positive subjects. 61.1% of the AFB smear-positi ve subjects were between the ages of 21 and 40 years. Only 0.95% of the subjects were co-infected with HIV and TB, whilst 75.6% did not know their HI V statuses. Of the subjects who accepted HIV testing , 57 (8.66%) tested positive, and 36 of them were AFB smear-positive. With the additional HIV testing , the HIV-TB co-infection prevalence rose to 4.39%. HIV-TB co-infection rates are thus affected by the availability of opportunities for testing to the pa tients at risk; with a large proportion of TB patients una ware of their HIV statuses. There is an urgent need to institute integrated detection and treatment servic es for HIV and TB.
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