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Free Content Visceral leishmaniasis and HIV in Tigray, Ethiopia

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Summary Objectives

To identify characteristics that increased the risk of mortality in Ethiopian visceral leishmaniasis patients in a treatment programme managed by Médecins sans Frontières, in Tigray, Northern Ethiopia. Methods

Retrospective review of a cohort of 791 patients treated for visceral leishmaniasis. Results

The cohort displayed all the classical signs and symptoms of the disease. The case fatality rate was 18.5% (146) (95% CI: 15.8–21.3%). Logistic regression showed that individuals who experienced at least one episode of vomiting or haemorrhage were more likely to die than those who did not. A subcohort of individuals who tested human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-positive were more than four times more likely to die than those who tested HIV-negative (OR 4.5, 95% CI: 1.8–11.4). Conclusion

This study identifies characteristics associated with death in this population and highlights the devastating effect of co-infection with visceral leishmaniasis and HIV in the African context.
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Keywords: Africa; Ethiopia; HIV co-infection; mortality; visceral leishmaniasis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Public Health and Epidemiology, UCD, National University of Ireland, Dublin, Ireland 2: Medical Department, Médecins Sans Frontières, Amsterdam, The Netherlands 3: Department of Community Health and General Practice, Trinity Centre for Health Sciences, Tallaght, Ireland

Publication date: 01 August 2003

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