Authors: Francis Fredrick, Tumaini V. Mhada
Introduction: Anaemia is common among HIV infected patients; causes of anaemia in these patients are multifactorial. Anemia is noted as one of important predictors of outcome in HIV infected patients. Tis study was carried out to determine the prevalence of anaemia among HIV infected children attending HIV clinic at Muhimbili National Hospital.Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out and 240 HIV infected children attending HIV clinic at MNH were recruited. Structured questionnaire was used to obtain socio-demographic characteristics. Laboratory tests were performed for each participant to determine haemoglobin level, mean cell volume, mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration, white blood cells and CD4 count and percent.Results: Hundred and thirty three (55.4%) of recruited participants were males, 219 (91.2%) were using antiretroviral drugs and 129 (53%) were using stavudine, lamivudine and nevirapine combination. Mean haemoglobin level was 10.9 ± 1.4 g/dl and mean CD4 was 1118.3 ± 656.1 cell/mm3 while mean CD4 percent was 31.1 ± 10 %. Prevalence of anaemia was 78.8% (189/240), anaemia was noted to be more prevalent among younger participants (<5 years) p=0.012. Participants using ART and those high CD4 percent (25%) had lower proportion of anaemic patients as compared to participants who were not using ART and those with low CD4 percent although the difference was not statistically significant.Conclusions: Prevalence of anaemia was noted to be high and was more prevalent among younger participants; there is a need to screen for anaemia in HIV infected children attending for clinic in our setting.