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Medical News

HIV+ Heterosexuals Test Positive at Later Stage Than Homosexual or Bisexual Men

March 25, 2005

HIV-positive heterosexual men and women present for HIV testing at a later stage of infection than homosexual and bisexual testers, according to a prospective observational study by K. Manavi and colleagues, Lothian University Hospital National Health Service Trust. The authors defined late presentation as testing HIV-positive with a baseline CD4+ T-cell count less than 200 cells/mL.

Between December 1999 and January 2003, researchers compared baseline CD4+ T-cell counts in HIV-positive heterosexual men and women, IV drug users, homosexual and bisexual men diagnosed in Genitourinary Medicine and Regional Infectious Disease Unit (GUM/RIDU) departments, and routinely screened pregnant patients in Edinburgh.

During the study, 189 patients tested in GUM/RIDU and 13 screened pregnant females were diagnosed with HIV. Of them, 34 percent of GUM/RIDU patients and 38 percent of maternal patients had CD4+ T-cells of fewer than 200 cells/mL at diagnosis. Among the heterosexuals diagnosed at GUM/RIDU sites, 45 percent were late presenters. Significantly fewer homosexual men tested late. There was no difference in proportion of late testing between the antenatal diagnoses and all heterosexual GUM/RIDU diagnoses (5/13 and 35/78, respectively).

"A significant number of HIV-infected heterosexual patients are late presenters in the HIV testing at GUM/RIDU," researchers concluded. "HIV screening programs for heterosexual individuals in any medical encounter may reduce the number of late presenters."

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The full study, "Heterosexual Men and Women With HIV Test Positive at a Later Stage of Infection Than Homo- or Bisexual Men," was published in International Journal of STDs and AIDS (2004;15(12):811-814).

Back to other news for March 25, 2005

Adapted from:
Women's Health Weekly
03.10.2005



  
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
 

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