Trends of tuberculosis and HIV infections between 2004 and 2008 in Wolaita Sodo, southern Ethiopia

Takele Teklu, Yeshambel Belyhun, Solomon Tesfaye, Girmay Medhin
Ethiopian Medical Journal 2012, 50 (1): 1-11

BACKGROUND: In sub-Saharan Africa human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) epidemic has a major influence on tuberculosis (TB) epidemiology. Ethiopia is among the countries in the region most heavily affected by the HIV and TB. Recent evidence indicated that the HIV/AIDS epidemic may be more heterogeneous in different age categories, between males and females, across different risk groups, and/or in different geographical settings than previously believed. This heterogeneity implies that HIV/AIDS programs for a particular area should be based not only on national-level statistics, but it also needs to be geographically focused, and directed to those regions, districts or communities exhibiting higher prevalence. The current study was aimed to evaluate trends of the prevalence of HIV and TB infection in Wolaita Sodo town.

METHOD: This is institution based retrospective study and it covered the period of 2004 to 2008. We reviewed the medical records of 7375 patients with a diagnosis of TB and 11447 individuals screened for HIV at three heath institutions located in Wolaita Sodo town. Statistical significance of trend in proportions over the study period was evaluated by chi2 test for trend using Epi-Info version 6.03. P-value less than 0.05 was reported as being statistically significant.

RESULTS: The prevalence of TB was 17.1% (1262/7375), that of HIV was 10.7% (1220/11447) and the prevalence of HIV and TB co-infection was 7.8% (36/459). With the exception of 2008 annual TB cases, the prevalence of TB in Wolaita Sodo showed an overall significant decline over the study period (chi2 = 59.4, P < 0.001). The prevalence of TB (P = 0.003) and HIV (P < 0.001) has an increasing trend with age for study participants younger than 44 years and decrease then after (P < 0.001). Being a female was a significant risk factor for HIV infection (OR = 1.35; 95% CI: 1.23 to 1.47) but not for TB infection.

CONCLUSION: In the study area annual prevalence of TB, HIV and TB/HIV co-infection were significantly decreased from 2004 to 2008 in the age range of 25-44 years. However, the level of infection of these infections is still high and remains as being public health problems in the study area. Therefore, a good practice of TB and HIV control strategy adopted in the area should be strictly continued.

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