June 26, 2007
In the current study, a sample of HIV patients completed a questionnaire identifying their demographic characteristics and risk factors for hepatitis C virus (HCV). A chart review was conducted to confirm the information obtained in the survey. Risk factors associated with coinfection status at [alpha] level of 0.1 in univariate analysis were entered into a multivariate Cox regression model.
A total of 242 HIV-positive patients were analyzed, of whom 74 were HIV/HCV-coinfected. Risk factors that were significantly different between the HIV-mono-infected and HIV/HCV-coinfected groups included IV drug use, snorting drugs, sharing razors or toothbrushes, time in prison, the presence of one or more tattoos, sex for money or drugs, sex with an IV drug user, and being a man who has sex with men (MSM). Multivariate regression modeling showed only IV drug use remained a significant risk factor/predictor of HIV/HCV coinfection. A sub-analysis revealed risk factors more prevalent among coinfected MSM, including IV drug use, sharing razors/toothbrushes, tattoos, sex for money or drugs, sex with IV drug users, and a history of having 11 or more sex partners. A history of STD infection and 11 or more sex partners was more prevalent among HIV-mono-infected MSM.
"HIV/HCV co-infection was associated with intravenous drug use but not with sexual risk factors," the researchers concluded.