by Jenna Mallon (’18)
Although the dangers of tuberculosis (TB) are widely known, many people do not know that a large percent of tuberculosis patients are also HIV positive. This issue is especially prevalent in Africa, Ethiopia specifically, where TB has been a large public health issue for over fifty years. This large health epidemic prompted Mulugeta Dalbo of the Arba Minch Health Science College in Arba Minch, Ethiopia to perform a retrospective follow-up study in order to analyze the high incidence of HIV/TB cases.
The study, conducted at the Arba Minch General Hospital, included 496 HIV positive patients with a mean age of 33.8. The study looked at behavioral habits, clinical characteristics, and socio-demographic status of the participants. They determined that the incidence rate of TB among the patients was 21.4%. Through bi-variable logistic regression, it was concluded that factors such as age, sex, history of cigarette smoking, hemoglobin level, and family size were predictors of TB, while education and marital status were not. Since smokers were three times more likely to develop TB than non-smokers, this study reveals a large need to fight smoking within the HIV community. The results of this study show the need to make lifestyle changes in order to help combat the TB/HIV problem in Ethiopia.
- M. Dalbo, A. Tamiso, Incidence and predictors of tuberculosis among HIV/AIDS infected patients: a five-year retrospective follow-up study. Advances in Infectious Diseases 6, 70-81 (2016). doi: 10.4236/aid.2016.62010.
- Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c2/Pulmonary_tuberculosis_-_Non-necrotizing_granuloma_%286545183785%29.jpg