High prevalence of HIV-1, HIV-2 and other sexually transmitted infections among women attending two sexual health clinics in Bissau, Guinea-Bissau, West Africa

Int J STD AIDS. 2010 Sep;21(9):631-5. doi: 10.1258/ijsa.2010.009584.


The objective was to examine the prevalence of HIV-1, HIV-2 and 10 other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and to explore the relationship between HIV and those STIs in women attending two sexual health clinics in Bissau, Guinea-Bissau. In all, 711 women with urogenital problems were included. Clinical examination was performed and HIV-1, HIV-2, human T-cell lymphotropic virus (HTLV)-1, HTLV-2 and syphilis were diagnosed by serology. Trichomonas vaginalis was examined using wet mount microscopy. Cervical samples (and swabs from visible ulcers, if present) were used for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) diagnosis of Chlamydia trachomatis, Mycoplasma genitalium, Haemophilus ducreyi, herpes simplex virus (HSV)-1 and HSV-2, and culture diagnosis of Neisseria gonorrhoeae. The prevalence of HIV-1, HIV-2, and HIV-1 and HIV-2 (dual infection) was 9.5%, 1.8% and 1.1%, respectively. The prevalence of HTLV-1 was 2.8%, HTLV-2 0%, HSV-1 1.4%, HSV-2 7.7%, T. vaginalis 20.4%, syphilis 1.0%, N. gonorrhoeae 1.3%, H. ducreyi 2.7%, M. genitalium 7.7% and C. trachomatis 12.6%. HIV-1 and/or HIV-2 infection was significantly associated with active HSV-2 and HIV-1 was significantly associated with M. genitalium infection. In conclusion, HIV-1 and HIV-2 prevalence was higher compared with previous studies of pregnant women in Guinea-Bissau. The prevalence of co-infection of HIV and other STIs is high. National evidence-based guidelines for the management of STIs in Guinea-Bissau are essential.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Bacteria / genetics
  • Bacteria / isolation & purification
  • Cervix Uteri / microbiology
  • Comorbidity
  • DNA, Bacterial / genetics
  • DNA, Bacterial / isolation & purification
  • Female
  • Guinea-Bissau / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Microscopy
  • Middle Aged
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Prevalence
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / microbiology
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / parasitology
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / virology
  • Trichomonas vaginalis / cytology
  • Trichomonas vaginalis / isolation & purification
  • Viruses / immunology
  • Viruses / isolation & purification
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • DNA, Bacterial