Unrecognized human immunodeficiency virus infection and risk factors among elderly medical patients at the Korle Bu teaching hospital, Accra, Ghana

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Abstract

Background: The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection usually infects persons in the reproductive age group (15-49 years), but elderly people are also susceptible. Many people in sub-Saharan Africa including Ghana believe that elderly people are not at risk for HIV. Despite numerous reports of the high prevalence of HIV infection among the elderly worldwide, there are no from Ghana. This work determined the sero-prevalence of HIV infection and risk factors for its transmission among 1,100 hospitalized elderly people at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH), Accra, Ghana. Methods: Subjects voluntarily completed a risk-factor questionnaire and provided a blood specimen for HIV testing. Results: Of the study participants, 440 were male (mean age: 64 ± 10.55 years), and 660 were female (mean age: 63 ± 9.51 years). The overall HIV-1 sero-prevalence among the subjects was 4.18 % (n = 46). On multivariate analysis, there was no statistical significance between the socio-demographics or risk factors and the HIV status of the participants. Conclusion: The results suggest high prevalence of HIV-1 among hospitalized elderly people at KBTH, recommending the need to include the elderly in HIV/AIDS testing, prevention, and control programmes. Trial registration: Trial registration number: MS-Et/M.9 - p4.10/2012-2013. Registered: 10th April, 2013.

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Adjei, A. A., Agyemang, S., Krampa, F. D., Abdul-Rahman, M., Ofei, F., Lartey, M., … Tettey, Y. (2016). Unrecognized human immunodeficiency virus infection and risk factors among elderly medical patients at the Korle Bu teaching hospital, Accra, Ghana. Tropical Diseases, Travel Medicine and Vaccines, 2(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s40794-016-0034-9

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