Original Research

Staging and haematological abnormalities of HIV-infected persons in Mangaung in the Free State Province, South Africa

Andries J. Groenewald, Corinna M. Walsh, Hendrik J. van Wyk, Sanet van Zyl, Lynette J. van der Merwe
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 4, No 1 | a462 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v4i1.462 | © 2012 Andries J. Groenewald, Corinna M. Walsh, Hendrik J. van Wyk, Sanet van Zyl, Lynette J. van der Merwe | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 31 May 2012 | Published: 15 October 2012

About the author(s)

Andries J. Groenewald, Department of Chemical Pathology, University of the Free State, South Africa
Corinna M. Walsh, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, University of the Free State, South Africa
Hendrik J. van Wyk, Department of Chemical Pathology, University of the Free State, South Africa
Sanet van Zyl, Department of Basic Medical Sciences, University of the Free State, South Africa
Lynette J. van der Merwe, Department of Basic Medical Sciences, University of the Free State, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: The prevalence of HIV in specific areas of South Africa and its impact on haematological parameters are largely unknown.

Objectives: To (1) describe the prevalence of HIV, (2) stage HIV based on CD4 counts, and (3) determine haematological parameters amongst participants in Mangaung, Free State Province.

Method: Blood specimens were obtained from 419 participants in formal and informal settlements in Mangaung. Participants were 25–64 years of age; 23.4% were male. Males and females were a mean of 45.1 and 44.3 years of age, respectively. Screening for HIV status was performed. Positive results were confirmed by a second test. Full blood counts were performed on all participants, and CD4 counts only on HIV-positive serum.

Results: The overall prevalence of HIV was 40.8%. The highest prevalence occurred in the 31–40 years age group, with 38.4% of females and 39.5% of males being infected. More than 33% of HIV-uninfected participants were 51–60 years of age. No significant change in CD4 count with age was observed, probably because 19.1% of the 225 respondents who reported using medication were receiving antiretroviral (ARV) treatment. Haematological results showed that HIV-infected participants had significantly reduced values for haemoglobin, leukocytes, neutrophils and lymphocytes, compared to HIV-uninfected participants. The mean corpuscular volume (MCV) was significantly higher in HIV-infected participants.

Conclusions: A high prevalence of HIV-infection was found. Anaemia and significantly reduced white blood cell counts were observed in the HIV-infected group. No significant change in CD4 counts with age was observed and could possibly be attributed to ARV therapy.


Keywords

blood cell abnormalities; CD4 count; full blood count; HIV status; prevalence; staging; urbanisation

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