Evaluation of liver function tests of HIV positive patients on Antiretroviral Therapy in Nnewi,Nigeria.
Liver enzymes-alanine and aspartate aminotransferases and alkaline phosphatase (AST, ALT and ALP), bilirubin and serum proteins were determined using standard laboratory methods and these parameters were used to evaluate the liver function of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)- positive patients receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART). The study was conducted on two hundred (200) HIV-positive patients (100 HIV-positive patients that were not on ART, 43 HIV-positive patients on ART for three months and 57 HIV-positive patients on ART for six months). One hundred (100) apparently healthy HIV-negative individuals served as control subjects. All subjects were between the ages of 18 to 55 years, mean age 33.6±9.0. There was statistically significant increase in the activities of the liver enzymes (AST, ALT, ALP), of HIV positive patients not on antiretroviral therapy (ART). Similar increases were also observed in HIV positive patients on ART for three months and six months respectively compared with HIV negative control subjects (p<0.05 and p<0.01 respectively). Result of bilirubin indicated that total bilirubin (TB) of HIV positive patients not on ART; conjugated bilirubin (CB) and TB of those on ART for three months and six months respectively were all significantly increased compared with control subjects (p<0.01). The total protein (TP) and albumin (ALB) of HIV positive patients not on ART and those on ART for three months were significantly reduced compared with control subjects (p<0.01). The globulin of these patients was however significantly increased (p<0.01). The albumin/globulin ratio (ALB /GLOB ratio) of all the HIV positive patients reduced significantly (P<0.01) compared with control subjects. The result of the present study shows that antiretroviral drugs may have significant effect on liver function. It is therefore recommended that liver function of HIV patients on ART should be determined regularly to monitor progress of ART therapy.
Keywords: Liver function; HIV; ART; Liver Enzymes; Bilirubin; Serum Proteins
Journal of Biomedical Investigation Vol. 4 (2) 2006 pp. 42-48