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Year : 2006  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 46-51

Prevalence of HIV sero-discordance in a resource - Constraint country

Feto-Maternal Unit, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
JUE Onakewhor
Feto-Materna/ Unit, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City
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Background: The management of HIV in pregnancy is a "couple's issue" and no one in the relationship takes HIV risks alone. Standard medical care for HIV/AIDS in medical appointments and health education programmes often exclude the patient's "significant others" for reasons of confidentiality. Partners' involvement in HIV management is beneficial. The determination of partners' serostatus and implementation of preventive strategies in situations of serodiscordance is essential. Objective: To determine the magnitude of serodiscordance of HIV infection among spouses of HIV positive pregnant women in Benin City, Nigeria and the level of response by partners to voluntary counseling and testing . Design: A retrospective analysis of the Partner Registers , Laboratory records of the spouses of HIV positive pregnant women and the electronic database of the PMTCT + Programme from January 1, 2003 to December 31 , 2005. Method: The study was conducted at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the Federal Government of Nigeria HIV Laboratory of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City. Using the Double/ Triple Algorithm of rapid serological test, the HIV serostatus of spouses of HIV- positive women were determined after counseling. Results: 130 male spouses were screened. 30(23.0%) were seropositive. 100(77.0%) were seronegative. The overall Male: Female seropositive ratio was 1:4. Conclusion: HIV infection serodiscordance in our married population is large suggesting high preponderance of premarital female infections. The challenges of meeting the future reproductive needs of serodiscordant couples is highlighted.To prevent partner infection, more pragmatic ways including legislative backup is suggested. Ways of mitigating the 'feminization of the epidemic' is suggested.

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