Nutritional Assessment of HIV/AIDS patients in Centre Region of Cameroon: A pilot study

Author(s): Fokam Fossoh D. Perpetue, Kotue Taptue Charles, Pieme Constant Anatole

Optimal nutrition is critical to minimize the susceptibility to opportunistic infections and HIV/AIDS progression. We assessed the nutritional status of people with HIV/AIDS living in Centre Region of Cameroon to help filling the knowledge gap in adult patients care. Cross-sectional analysis of 82 adults patients between 21 and 39 years old with an undetectable viral load at Saint Martin de Porrès Hospital in Yaounde was conducted. Body weight, height, waist and hip circumferences were measured for anthropometric variables. Plasma and serum total proteins, albumin, globulin, CD4 count were determined in blood samples. Patients provided 7-day food records for nutrients intakes. 56.1% of participants had received nutritional counselling. Undernutrition represented 8.5%. Obesity (11%) was concerning only women. Abdominal obesity was high (60.8%). Food consumption score was acceptable for 97.5%. Food diversity score was average for 51.9%. Participants had higher daily consumption of proteins (74.03[51-97.87] g) and carbohydrates (261.96 ± 107.38 g). Daily fats intake (70.31 ± 29.42 g) was normal for women. Total energy was lower (2012 ± 773.82 kcal) than needed. Plasma proteins (70.37 ± 9.70 g/L), serum proteins (70.24 ± 9.90 g/L), albumin (39.23 ± 9.58 g/L), globulins (31.00 ± 11.72 g/L), CD4 T cells (475.50 [273.75-692.00]/µL) were normal. Our findings suggest that, although the participants maintained a normal weight, their food intake was not enough adequate for nutrients needs. This could contribute to worsening HIV/AIDS progression. There is a need for development of effective strategies to improve nutritional status of people with HIV/AIDS, using locally available foods.

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