Pregnancy outcome in HIV seropositive women in Abakaliki, Nigeria

  • Samuel N Obi Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Federal Medical Centre, Abakaliki, Nigeria


Objective: To study the seroprevalence and the effect of HIV infection on pregnancy outcome.

Methods: From January 2000 to December 2004, 231 HIV seropositve women and 200 HIV seronegative matched groups from Abakaliki, Nigeria were recruited into a prospective study and followed until delivery.

Results: The HIV seroprevalence was 5.4%. All the HIV seropositive women were asymptomatic and 12.7% (n=30) defaulted (including 80% of previously diagnosed cases) during the antenatal clinic follow-up and were excluded from further analysis. Majority (52.5%) of the seropositive women were at the peak (20-29 years) of their reproductive years and women of low parity were commonly affected. The seropositive women are significantly more likely than control to have recurrent vulvovaginitis, positive syphilis serology, perineal tear, postpartum haemorrhage, puerperal infection, birth asphyxia and increased perinatal mortality (P<0.05). There was no difference in the incidence of low birth weight and congenital abnormality (P>0.05) in both groups. Delay in management contributed to maternal morbidity and perinatal mortality among the HIV seropositive mothers. Only six (2.9%) of the mothers and none of babies had antiretroviral therapy because of irregular supply in the hospital.

Conclusion: There is need for the Obstetrician to ensure proper management of HIV seropositve mothers and for government to make the subsidized antiretroviral drugs widely available so as to reduce mother to child transmission of HIV virus.

Keywords: HIV, pregnancy, outcome

Orient Journal of Medicine Vol. 17(3&4) 2005: 25-30

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eISSN: 1115-0521