Prevalence of HIV indicator conditions in late presenting patients with HIV: a missed opportunity for diagnosis?

Y. D. Lin, S. E. Garner, J. S.Y. Lau, T. M. Korman, I. J. Woolley

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Aim: To evaluate prior prevalence of HIV indicator conditions in late-presenters with HIV infection. Design: Retrospective cohort study between 2000 and 2014 in a healthcare network in Melbourne, Australia comparing patients presenting with late diagnosis of HIV infection (CD4 < 350 cells/ml) to those patients who had a CD greater than or equal to 350 cells/ml at presentation. Method: The European AIDS Clinical Society guidelines on HIV indicator guided testing were used to assess for any indicator conditions in their prior medical history which may have represented a missed opportunity for earlier diagnosis. Main outcome measures: Descriptive statistics and prevalence of HIV indicator conditions. Results: Of 436 patients with HIV infection, 82 were late presenters. Late presenters were more commonly male (83% vs. 75%, P = 0.11), older (mean age 45 vs. 39 years), born overseas (61% vs. 58%, P = 0.68) and report heterosexual transmission as their exposure risk (51% vs. 31%, P < 0.001). Of 80 patients with late presentation of HIV infection, 54 (55%) had at least one, 29 (36%) at least 2, 12 (15%) at least 3 and 5 (6%) had 4 or more previous HIV indicator conditions which would have triggered HIV testing according to guidelines. The most common indicator conditions were: unexplained loss of weight (31%), herpes zoster (10%), thrombocytopenia or leukopenia (10%), oral or oesophageal candidiasis (10%) and community acquired pneumonia (9%). Twenty patients (25%) had HIV indicator conditions diagnosed at least 12 months before the eventual diagnosis of HIV infection. Discussion/ Conclusion: Patients diagnosed with late-presenting HIV often had an HIV indicator condition prior to presentation, presenting a missed opportunity for earlier diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-21
Number of pages5
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019

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