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Prevalence and predictors of low bone mineral density in treatment-naive HIV-infected patients and its correlation with CD4 cell counts

1 Department of Medicine, PGIMER, Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, New Delhi, India
2 Department of Radiology, PGIMER, Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Pulin Kumar Gupta,
Department of Medicine, PGIMER, Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, Baba Kharak Singh Road, New Delhi - 110 001
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/tcmj.tcmj_177_19

Objective: HIV virtually affects every organ system of the body. The skeletal system is no exception, and antiretroviral therapy (ART) has been implicated in bone diseases. However, not many studies have been done to evaluate bone disease in treatment (ART) naive HIV-infected patients, and hence, the present study was executed. Materials and Methods: One hundred and twenty HIV-infected ART-naive patients and 80 age- and sex-matched healthy controls were recruited for this study. A thorough history and physical examination was done followed by laboratory investigations after an overnight fasting. Bone mineral density (BMD) was measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry scan at the level of lumbar spine, femur, and forearm. Results: Of 120 ART-naive HIV-infected cases, the prevalence of osteoporosis and osteopenia was 13% and 41%, respectively, as compared to 0% and 17.5% in controls (P < 0.001). The mean BMD in cases was 0.842 g/cm2 which was approximately 25% lesser than that in controls. Hypovitaminosis-D was seen in 100% of cases as compared to 65% of controls (P < 0.01). A significant association of low BMD was seen with HIV-infection per se (P < 0.001), low CD4 cell counts (P < 0.001), low Vitamin D levels (P < 0.001), long duration of disease (P < 0.04), history of opportunistic infections (P < 0.03), and history of tuberculosis in the past (P < 0.05). Conclusion: Bone diseases such as osteoporosis and osteopenia characterized by low BMD are very common in HIV-infected patients. Virus per se, along with low CD4 cell counts and low Vitamin D levels are major predictors of pathological fractures in these individuals.

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