Comparing Cd4 Counts in Syphilitic and Non Syphilitic HIV Patients, Luwero District Uganda

Sadala Cassim, Enoch Muwanguzi, Richard Apecu Onyuthi, Caesar Oyet


Close to 12 million people living with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection were infected with syphilis in 2004. Most of these infections occurred in developing countries with sub-Saharan Africa and South East Asia dominating. The global efforts to tackle syphilis infection are mostly aimed at pregnant women yet such kind of localized interventions leave other susceptible individuals at risk of infection leaving great public and clinical impact.

The aim of our study was to compare CD4 counts in HIV positive syphilis negative and syphilis positive Highly Active Antiretroviral therapy (HAART) nae patients. The study was approved by Research and Ethic Committee and Institutional Review Committee of Mbarara University of Science and Technology. We recruited 212 HIV positive participants and blood samples were collected for CD4 count, Rapid Plasma Reagin (RPR) and Treponema Pallidum Haem Agglutination (TPHA) tests. The data was analyzed using STATA 12.0E (STATACORP LP TEXAS USA). 95% confidence level was used and where a predictor and outcome are compared, a p-value of < 0.05 was considered significant.

Our study recorded a high prevalence (11.3%, 95% CI: 9.2 14.8%) of syphilis in HIV HAART nae patients. The current study reports lower CD4 count in syphilis positive HIV patients (mean 318/l) compared to syphilis negative HV positive patients (mean 656/l), p value < 0.0001.

As a conclusion; there is high prevalence of syphilis HIV co-infections in Uganda. Syphilitic HIV patients tends to have lower CD4 counts compared to non syphilitic HIV patients.


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