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Prevalence of HIV among general surgical patients in southeastern Nigeria


With the advent of HAART, many HIV patients are now living longer. It is expected that the incidence of HIV-related malignancies will increase, with additional burden of operating on HIV patients in areas of chronic severe shortages where minimum basic precautions may not always be feasible. We decided to assess the HIV prevalence in surgical patients and compare the periods 2001-04 and 2008-09.


To determine HIV seropositivity among elective general surgical patients at Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi.

Patients and methods

All surgical patients were sent for HIV screening as part of their workup for surgery. Patients testing positive were sent for further confirmatory tests.


During the period 2008/09, 75 out of 2350 (3.25%) patients tested were positive for HIV. This compares with 78 out 2208 in the 3-year period 2001-04.(3.5%). Of this number, only 30.4% of these seropositive patients are receiving antiretroviral treatment. Males were affected more than the females and the reproductive age group [30-40] was the most affected.


The prevalence of HIV seropositivity among general surgical patients has remained the same over the past 10 years. The prevalence of 3-3.5% is significantly lower than the figures quoted from sentinel studies in Nigeria.


This article has been published as part of Infectious Agents and Cancer Volume 5 Supplement 1, 2010: Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Malignancies in AIDS and Other Acquired Immunodeficiencies (ICMAOI).The full contents of the supplement are available online at

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Correspondence to Stanley Anyanwu.

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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Anyanwu, S., Chianakwana, G. & Ihekwoaba, E. Prevalence of HIV among general surgical patients in southeastern Nigeria. Infect Agents Cancer 5 (Suppl 1), A64 (2010).

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