Prevalent and incident HIV diagnoses among Entamoeba histolytica-infected adult males: a changing epidemiology associated with sexual transmission--Taiwan, 2006-2013

PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2014 Oct 9;8(10):e3222. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0003222. eCollection 2014 Oct.


Background: Sexually transmitted Entamoeba histolytica infection (EHI) has been increasingly recognized among men who have sex with men (MSM). We used the National Disease Surveillance Systems (NDSS) to identify prevalent and incident HIV diagnoses among adults with EHI and to determine the associated factors.

Methodology: The NDSS collect demographic, clinical, and behavioral characteristics of case patients through physician reports and public health interviews. EHI was confirmed by polymerase-chain-reaction assays, histopathology, or serology with documented liver abscess. We linked NDSS databases to identify prevalent and incident HIV diagnoses among noninstitutionalized Taiwanese adults with confirmed EHI during 2006-2013. Cox proportional-hazards analysis was used to determine associated factors.

Principal findings: Of noninstitutionalized adults with EHI, we identified prevalent HIV diagnosis in 210 (40%) of 524 males and one (1.7%) of 59 females, and incident HIV diagnosis in 71 (23%) of 314 males. MSM accounted for 183 (87%) and 64 (90%) of prevalent and incident HIV diagnoses in males, respectively. From 2006-2009 to 2010-2013, the prevalence of HIV diagnosis increased from 32% to 45% (P = 0.001) while the incidence of HIV diagnosis increased from 5.4 to 11.3 per 100 person-years (P = 0.001) among males with EHI. Incident HIV diagnosis was independently associated with a younger age, residing in metropolitan areas, hospitalization, previous syphilis, and engagement in oral, anal, or oral-anal sex before illness onset.

Conclusions/significance: Prevalent and incident HIV diagnoses were increasingly identified among adult males in Taiwan, preferentially affecting younger urban MSM. Surveillance and risk-reduction interventions are recommended against the interplay of HIV epidemic and sexually transmitted EHI.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Entamoebiasis / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / epidemiology*
  • Homosexuality, Male
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Syphilis / epidemiology
  • Taiwan / epidemiology
  • Time Factors

Grant support

The authors received no specific funding for this work.