Seroprevalence of Schistosomiasis and Strongyloides infection in HIV-infected patients from endemic areas attending a European infectious diseases clinic
1 Department of Infectious Diseases, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
2 HIV Molecular Research Group, School of Medicine and Medical Science, University College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
AIDS Research and Therapy 2013, 10:23 doi:10.1186/1742-6405-10-23Published: 8 September 2013
Although the Centres for disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends empiric treatment for schistosomiasis and strongyloidiasis (prevalent but treatable parasitic infections) in some refugee groups it is unclear if these guidelines should be extended to non-refugee immigrants from endemic areas. We aimed to assess seroprevalence of, and risk factors for, positive schistosomiasis and strongyloides serology in HIV-infected patients from endemic areas attending a European Infectious Diseases clinic.
In a prospective cohort study, HIV-infected patients from helminth endemic areas underwent clinical assessment and blood draw for schistosomiasis and strongyloides serology, routine haematology and inflammatory markers (ESR and CRP). Between-group differences were analyzed by Wilcoxin Signed Rank and Fisher’s t tests as appropriate.
Ninety HIV-infected patients (mean [standard deviation (SD)] age 34  years, 29% male) were recruited from May 2008 to June 2009. Nine (10%) subjects tested positive for helminth infections. Seven tested positive for schistosomiasis (8%) while two tested positive for strongyloides (2%). Seropositive subjects were more likely to have higher eosinophil counts (mean [SD]) (0.3 [0.3] vs. 0.15 [0.2] x103cells/cm, P = 0.021) with a trend towards lower CD4+ T-cell counts (mean [SD]) (280  vs. 395  cells/mm3, P = 0.08).
The high prevalence of helminth infections (10%) in asymptomatic HIV infected adults identified in this study supports routine screening of immigrants from helminth endemic areas or with exposure history.