African Journal of Clinical and Experimental Microbiology

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Liver function tests in HIV-1 infected asymptomatic patients and HIV-1 AIDS patients without hepatomegaly in Lagos, Nigeria

PS Ogunro, DP Oparinde, AB Okesina


Hepatic functions were assessed by serum assays of albumin (ALB), total protein (TP), total bilirubin (TB), conjugated bilirubin (CB), serum activities of alanine transaminase (ALT), aspartate transaminase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and gamma – glutamyl transferase (GGT) in 51 HIV-1AIDS patients, 38 HIV-1 infected asymptomatic patients and 56 age and sex matched healthy HIV negative controls. The mean ± SEM serum ALB concentration of 23.5 ± 1.2 g/L in AIDS patients was significantly lower (p < 0.001) than those of HIV-1 infected asymptomatic patients and healthy controls; 38.9 ± 3.1g/L and 39.4 ± 2.8g/L respectively. The mean ± SEM TB concentration of 17.8 ± 1.3 μmol/L in AIDS patients was significantly higher (p < 0.01) than 11.7 ± 1.1μmol/L observed in HIV-1 infected asymptomatic patients and 10.8 ± 2.1μmol/L in the controls. Similarly, there was a significant elevation (p < 0.05) in serum CB concentration of 6.5 ± 0.9µmol/L in AIDS patients compared to HIV-I infected patients of 3.8 ± 1.0 μmol/L and controls of 3.1 ± 0.8 μmol/L. The mean ± SEM ALT, AST, ALP and GGT activities (iu/L) of 48.7 ± 3.1, 54.3 ± 3.3, 84.8 ± 4.3 and 47.5 ± 4.1 respectively in AIDS patients were significantly higher (p < 0.001) than 21.3 ± 2.9, 25.6 ± 1.3, 56.4 ± 3.2 and 25.1 ± 1.7 respectively observed for the same enzymes in HIV-1 infected patients and 20.1 ± 3.1, 24.5 ± 2.6, 54.6 ± 4.3 and 24.2 ± 2.1 respectively in the controls. These results provide evidence to suggest that hepatic damage is greater in AIDS patients than in HIV-1 infected asymptomatic patients even in the absence of hepatomegaly. We conclude that this may be due to opportunistic infections that set in at the later part of HIV-1 infection (i.e. at AIDS stage) or increase severity of HIV-1 infection or both.

Key Words: HIV-1 infected asymptomatic patient, AIDS, Hepatic functions

Afr. J. Clin. Exper. Microbiol. Vol.6(1) 2005: 40-45
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