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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - AIDS (London, England)
Title HIV acquisition during pregnancy and postpartum is associated with genital infections and partnership characteristics: A cohort study
Volume 29
Issue 15
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2015
Page numbers 2025-2033
URL https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4692052/

To determine the risk and cofactors for HIV acquisition during pregnancy and postpartum.


Prospective cohort study


Pregnant women in western Kenya were enrolled if HIV seronegative at that visit or within 3 months. Serial HIV nucleic acid amplification tests (NAATs) were conducted at 1–3 month intervals to 9 months postpartum. Genital swabs were collected for detection of chlamydia and gonorrhea at baseline, and for trichomonas, bacterial vaginosis (BV), and yeast at baseline and follow-up.


Among 1304 pregnant women, median age was 22 years, 78% were married for a median of 4 years, 66% reported knowing partner HIV status, and 8% reported using condoms. Study retention was 98%. During 1235 person-years of follow-up, HIV incidence was 2.31/100 person-years (95% Confidence Interval [CI]:0.71–4.10). Incident HIV was associated with syphilis (Hazard Ratio [HR] 9.18, 95% CI:2.15–39.3), chlamydia (HR 4.49, 95% CI:1.34–15.0), BV (HR 2.91, 95% CI:1.25–6.76), yeast (HR 3.46, 95% CI:1.46–8.19), STI history (HR 3.48, 95%, CI:1.31–9.27), lifetime number of sex partners, (HR 1.19, 95% CI:1.03–1.37), partner age discordance (HR 1.07 per year, 95% CI:1.02–1.13) and shorter marriage (HR 1.19 per year, 95% CI:1.03–1.38). No women with incident HIV reported an HIV-infected partner. In multivariate analyses, chlamydia, older partners, and yeast infection remained significant; however, power was limited.


Pregnant and lactating women may not perceive HIV risk and rarely used condoms. Prevention and treatment of genital infections and risk stratification to identify women for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) could decrease HIV acquisition in pregnant/lactating women.

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