Demographic, clinical, and virologic characteristics of African-born persons with HIV/AIDS in a Minnesota Hospital

Omobosola O. Akinsete, Tracy Sides, Diane Hirigoyen, Charles Cartwright, Christy M Boraas, Cynthia S Davey, Luisa Pessoa-Brandão, Mary McLaughlin, Ellen Kane, Jane Hall, William K Henry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Minnesota is currently home to the tenth largest African population and the second largest East African population in the United States. HIV is increasingly being diagnosed in African-born persons in Minnesota. A retrospective survey was conducted on all African-born patients in our HIV clinic between January 1994 and June 2005. We identified 237 patients who were African-born and HIV-positive. They constituted 12% of patients attending the clinic within the study timeframe. There was no significant difference in the ages of the African-born and non-African patients in the HIV clinic. African-born patients were more likely to be women compared with non-African patients (p < 0.001). Forty-three percent of the African-born patients presented with AIDS as defined by CD4+ T cell counts less than 200 cells per milliliter compared to 33% of antiretroviral naïve non-African HIV patients in the clinic (p < 0.001). Most patients were infected through heterosexual contact and only 4% were diagnosed as a result of routine testing. Seven known HIV subtypes and four unique recombinant forms were identified. The most common opportunistic infection was pulmonary tuberculosis. African immigrants with HIV appear to: (1) access care at later stages of HIV disease than other patients in our clinic; (2) are often infected with non-B subtypes; (3) do not routinely get tested for HIV. Increased awareness to this growing trend is needed for health care providers and public health officials to tailor educational programs and prevention efforts for African immigrants in the United States.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)356-365
Number of pages10
JournalAIDS Patient Care and STDs
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2007


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