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Spectrum of Disease in Persons With Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection in the United States

Karen M. Farizo, MD; James W. Buehler, MD; Mary E. Chamberland, MD; Bruce M. Whyte, MD; Erika Sivarajan Froelicher, PhD; Sharon G. Hopkins, DVM, MPH; Christie M. Reed, MPH; Eve D. Mokotoff, MPH; David L. Cohn, MD; Sue Troxler, RN, MPH; Ann F. Phelps, MPH; Ruth L. Berkelman, MD
JAMA. 1992;267(13):1798-1805. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03480130114035.
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Objective.  —To describe the spectrum of disease in persons with human mmunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.

Design.  —Retrospective survey of medical records.

Setting.  —More than 50 clinics, hospitals, and private medical practices in nine US cities.

Patients.  —A total of 626 women and 7008 men 13 years of age or older with HIV infection who received medical care from January 1990 through March 1991 were consecutively enrolled.

Main Outcome Measures.  —Any history of diseases in the 1987 case definition for the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), and during the 12-month period preceding enrollment (baseline period), the occurrence of other major diseases, hospitalizations, and results of CD4+ lymphocyte counts.

Results.  —Thirty-two percent of persons met the 1987 case definition for AIDS. The occurrence of an AIDS-indicator disease during the baseline period ranged from 3% (33/1011) to 46% (1254/2748) among persons with CD4+ lymphocyte counts of 0.50 × 109/L or greater and fewer than 0.20 × 109/L (≥500 and <200 CD4+ lymphocytes per microliter), respectively, and, at comparable CD4+ ymphocyte levels, was similar among women compared with men, and among persons who reported intravenous drug use compared with men who reported male-to-male sex. The frequency of one or more other major infectious diseases (eg, other pneumonias, bacterial sepsis, pulmonary tuberculosis) ranged from 6% to 16% among persons with CD4+ lymphocyte counts of 0.50 × 109/L or greater and fewer than 0.20 × 109/L, respectively; these illnesses were also associated with a history of intravenous drug use. Among persons who did not meet the 1987 AIDS case definition, 30% of those with an available CD4+ lymphocyte count had fewer CD4+ cells than 0.20 × 109/L, 8% had one or more major infectious diseases, and 14% had one or more hospital admissions.

Conclusions.  —For every person with AIDS at these sites, two additional persons with HIV infection were receiving medical care, many of whom had severe immunosuppression and a broad spectrum of serious HIV-related disease.(JAMA. 1992;267:1798-1805)


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