Epidemiological and Clinical Characteristics of HIV/AIDS Patients Followed-up in Cappadocia Region: 18 Years Experience

Alp E., Bozkurt I., DOĞANAY M.

MIKROBIYOLOJI BULTENI, vol.45, no.1, pp.125-136, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 45 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.125-136
  • Erciyes University Affiliated: Yes


HIV/AIDS is still an important health problem worldwide and the number of people living with HIV worldwide continued to grow in the last years. The first HIV/AIDS cases had been reported in 1985 from Turkey and with an increasing trend during the following years, the number of cases reached to 3898 with 528 new cases in 2009. The aim of this retrospective study was to share the 18 years experience with the patients who were followed-up in Erciyes University Hospital Infectious Diseases Clinics in Cappadocia region. The records of 55 (81%) HIV/AIDS patients out of 68 who were admitted to our clinic between 19922009 have been attained and the demographic and clinical characteristics, administered therapy regimens and adverse effects of antiretroviral therapy of those cases have been evaluated. Forty-three (78%) of the patients were male and 12 (22%) were female of which 11(92%) of their spouses had HIV/AIDS. The median age of the patients was 45 and 20 (36%) of them were over 54 years old. Fifty (91%) of patients lived in Cappadocia region, and 24 (44%) had lived in foreign countries. Fifty (91%) patients had risky heterosexual contact as a risk factor. Of these patients, 47 (85%) were in full-blown AIDS stage at admission. Twenty-seven (49%) of the patients diagnosed occasionally during routine anti-HIV testing, did not have any symptoms. Fever, weakness and weight loss were the most frequently detected symptoms in the rest of the patients. Ten (18%) patients had underlying diseases such as hypertension, chronic hepatitis B or C, coronary artery disease, diabetes mellitus and chronic renal disfunction. Opportunistic infections were determined in 25 (45.5%) patients and 20 (40%) of these infections were determined at admission. The most frequent opportunistic infection was oral candidiasis, followed by Pneumocystis (carinii) jiroveci pneumonia and tuberculosis. Malignancy was diagnosed in three patients; two had Kaposi's sarcoma and one had multiorgan adenocarcinoma. Antiretroviral therapy was started in 37 (67%) of the patients and lamivudin/zidovudin + lopinavir/ritonavir was the most commonly used combination. Antiretroviral therapy was changed in 13 (35%) patients most frequently due to the development of side effects of the drugs. Nausea, vomiting and hyperlipidemia were the most frequent side effects, while diarrhea, skin rashes, anemia, leucopenia and lipoatrophy have also been detected. One patient discontinued therapy by his own will. Sixteen (27.6%) of 58 patients, whose records could be achieved, died. The mortality rates detected in 19921999 and 2000-2009 periods were 78.6% (11/14) and 11.4% (5/44), respectively. The mean exitus time of the patients was six months after the diagnosis. The reasons of mortality were opportunistic infections in six patients, and adenocarcinoma in one patient. Autopsy had been performed in seven cases, however three patients' records could be attained. One had disseminated candidiasis and miliary tuberculosis, one had multiorgan carcinoma, and one had pneumonia, kidney and colon necrosis and condyloma acuminata. In conclusion, increasing awareness of physicians about HIV/AIDS epidemiology in Turkey provides early diagnosis and prevents the dissemination of illness in community.