Background: Intestinal parasites are endemic in many parts of the world where HIV infection is also widespread. Previous studies had shown that the spectrum of opportunistic and common endemic parasitic infections with HIV vary in different regions and usually reflect the infections prevalent in these regions. This present study was aimed at comparing the prevalence and types of intestinal parasitic infections in HIV sero-positive and sero-negative patients in Lagos.
Materials and methods: Venous blood and stool samples of 1080 patients, recruited from three health care institutions were screened for HIV infection and intestinal parasites using HIV-1, HIV-2 rapid tests, direct wet mount with saline/iodine and formol-ether technique, respectively.
Results: Results showed that 6% (65/1080) of patients were sero-positive for HIV infection. In addition, 23.3% (252/1080) patients were infected with intestinal parasites and 33.8% (22/65) of patients with HIV had intestinal parasites co-infections. The prevalence of Entamoeba histolytica/Entamoeba dispar, Entamoeba coli, Iodamoeba butschilii, Giardia intestinalis, and Hookworm were statistically significantly higher among HIV sero-positive patients as compared to the HIV sero-negative patients. In addition, HIV sero-positive patients had higher odds of mixed intestinal parasites than the HIV sero-negative patients (9.1% versus 3.9%; adjusted OR 2.05, 95% CI, 1.14-3.72, P=0.021).
Conclusion: In this study population, HIV sero-positive patients were more likely to have intestinal parasitic infections. The study underscores the public health significance of intestinal parasitic infections in HIV infected individuals.
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