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Differences in survival among adults with HIV-associated Kaposi's sarcoma during routine HIV treatment initiation in Zomba district, Malawi: a retrospective cohort analysis

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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>09/2017
<mark>Journal</mark>International Health
Issue number5
Volume9
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)281-287
Publication statusPublished
Early online date5/09/17
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Background: The HIV epidemic is a major public health concern throughout Africa. Malawi is one of the worst affected countries in sub-Saharan Africa with a 2014 national HIV prevalence currently estimated at 10% (9.3-10.8%) by UNAIDS. Study reports, largely in the African setting comparing outcomes in HIV patients with and without Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) indicate poor prognosis and poor health outcomes amongst HIV+KS patients. Understanding the mortality risk in this patient group could help improve patient management and care.

Methods: Using data for the 559 adult HIV+KS patients who started ART between 2004 and September 2011 at Zomba clinic in Malawi, we estimated relative hazard ratios for all-cause mortality by controlling for age, sex, TB status, occupation, date of starting treatment and distance to the HIV+KS clinic.

Results: Patients with tuberculosis (95% CI: 1.05-4.65) and patients who started ART before 2008 (95% CI: 0.34-0.81) were at significantly greater risk of dying. A random-effects Cox model with Log-Gaussian frailties adequately described the variation in the hazard for mortality.

Conclusion: The year of starting ART and TB status significantly affected survival among HIV+KS patients. A sub-population analysis of this kind can inform an efficient triage system for managing vulnerable patients.