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The clinical feature of HIV/AIDS at presentation at the Jos University Teaching Hospital
Background: The clinical characteristics and consequences of HIV-1 infection observed in studies from developed countries cannot be generalized across the multiple virus subtypes that circulate in sub-Saharan Africa in general and Nigeria in particular. This study was therefore conducted to determine the commonest symptoms and signs at presentation in HIV-infected individuals at the Jos University Teaching Hospital.
Method: This descriptive study was conducted at the antiretroviral clinic of the Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos, between May and October 2004. Two hundred (200) newly diagnosed and laboratory confirmed adult cases of HIV infection without prior antiretroviral drug use were recruited after obtaining informed consent. Each qualified patient had a comprehensive history taken with emphasis on the clinical symptoms and detailed physical examination performed by the researchers. The data collected were analyzed using a multipurpose computer programme, Epi-info 2000 version 1.1.3 (Atlanta GA, USA).
Results: There were 86(43.0%) males and 114(57.0%) females whose mean ages were 39.0±7.8 and 32.0±8.1 years, respectively. The major symptoms in the study population were: weight loss (65.5%), fever (41.5%), chronic cough (38.5%), diarrhea (32.0%), pruritus (13.0%) and body rash (12.5%). The major signs were pallor (25.0%), oral thrush (20.5%), wasting (20.0%), lymphadenopathy (18.0%), dermatitis (16.0%), hyperpigmented nails (13.5%) and finger clubbing (8.5%).
Conclusion: The symptoms and signs of HIV/AIDS obtained were similar to those obtained by other workers from different parts of the world; however, the findings of hyperpigmented nails and finger clubbing have not been frequently reported for other populations.
Nigerian Journal of Medicine Vol. 17 (1) 2008 pp. 83-87