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BACKGROUND: HIV/AIDS predisposes to malnutrition. Malnutrition exacerbates HIV/AIDS progression resulting in increased morbidity and mortality. The magnitude of malnutrition in HIV/AIDS patients has not been well studied in Ethiopian setup. Our objective was to assess the prevalence of malnutrition and associated factors among HIV/AIDS patients admitted to Jimma University Specialized Hospital (JUSH).
METHOD: A cross-sectional study was conducted to assess the nutritional status of 109 HIV/AIDS patients admitted from November 2013 to July 2014. Cohort design was also used for outcome assessment. Serum levels of hemoglobin, albumin and CD4 counts were determined. Data were organized, coded, cleaned, entered into a computer and analyzed using SPSS version 16.0. Descriptive analysis was done initially. Those variables in the bivariate analysis with P–value < 0.25 were then considered as candidates to be included in the multivariable logistic regression model. A P-vale of < 0.05 was considered as statistically significant.
RESULTS: The mean age of the patients was 32.7+8.12 with male to female ratio of 1:1.9. Patients were in either clinical stage, 3(46.8%), or stage, 4(53.2%). Forty nine (45%) of the respondents had a CD4 count of < 200 cells/μL. The overall prevalence of malnutrition was 46.8% (BMI<18.5kg/m2) and 44.1% (MUAC≤ 20cm). Eighty four (77.1%) of the patients had a serum albumin level of ≤3.5g/dl while 76 (69.6%) of the patients had anemia (Hg<12g/dl).
CONCLUSION: The prevalence of malnutrition was found to be high. WHO Stage 4 disease and CD4 count <200cells/μl were independent predictors of malnutrition.
KEYWORDS: Malnutrition, HIV/AIDS, WHO Clinical Stage, CD4 count, Jimma, Ethiopia