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Changes in the haematological parameters of HIV-1 infected children at 6 and 12 months of antiretroviral therapy in a large clinic cohort, North-Central Nigeria

Author List
Augustine O Ebonyi
Stephen Oguche
Martha O Ochoga
Oche O Agbaji
Joseph A Anejo-Okopi
Isaac O Abah
Prosper I Okonkwo
John A Idoko


Background: Prior to commencing antiretroviral therapy (ART), haematological abnormalities are a common occurrence in individuals diagnosed with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). In the course of receiving ART, these abnormalities usually improve. We determined the prevalence of haematological abnormalities in children diagnosed with HIV-1 and the changes in haematological parameters that occur after 6 and 12 months of being on ART. Methods: A cross-sectional study of HIV-1 infected children aged 2 months to 15 years, between July 2005 and March 2013, at the paediatric HIV clinic of the Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos. Median values of repeated measures were compared using the Wilcoxon signed-rank sum test. Results: The prevalence of anaemia, thrombocytopenia and leukopenia among the 941 children studied, prior to ART was 6.4%, 7.0% and 8.6%. Median (IQR) haemoglobin (Hb) levels increased from 10 g/dL (9–11 g/dL) at baseline to 11 g/dL (10–12 g/dL) and 11 g/dL (10–12 g/dL) at 6 and 12 months of ART (P<0.001 and P<0.001), respectively, a 10% increase in both cases. Also, platelet count increased from a median of 327×103/μL (243–426×103/μL) at baseline to 333×103/μL (266–408×103/μL) at 6 months and 339×103/μL (267–420×103/μL) at 12 months, representing a 1.8% and 3.7% increase, respectively. The median total white blood cell count decreased from 7.4×103/μL (5.3–9.9×103/μL) at baseline to 5.9×103/μL (4.6–8.0×103/μL) and 5.8×103/μL (4.5–7.5×103/μL) at 6 and 12 months of ART (P<0.001 and P<0.001), a 20.3% and 21.6% decrease, respectively. Conclusion: During the 12 months of ART, children in our cohort had significant improvements in haematological parameters such as haemoglobin levels and platelet counts, which would suggest an early positive response to ART.

Article Category

HIV Treatment

Article Type

Original research

Posted Date


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