Prevalence of Hypertension in HIV-Positive Patients on Highly Active Retroviral Therapy (HAART) Compared with HAART-Naïve and HIV-Negative Controls: Results from a Norwegian Study of 721 Patients
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- Bergersen, B.M., Sandvik, L., Dunlop, O. et al. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis (2003) 22: 731. doi:10.1007/s10096-003-1034-z
Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) may induce dyslipidemia, insulin resistance and body fat distribution similar to that seen in the metabolic syndrome. Hypertension is often a part of the classic metabolic syndrome, but few studies are published about hypertension in HIV-positive patients on HAART. The aim of this study was to compare the prevalence of hypertension in HIV-positive patients on HAART with that in HIV-positive/HAART-naïve patients and HIV-negative controls. The cross-sectional study included 283 unselected HIV-positive ambulatory patients, 219 who were on HAART and 64 who were HAART-naïve. Age- and gender-matched controls (n=438) were randomly selected from a simultaneous health survey of the general population. The prevalence of hypertension was 21% in patients on HAART, 13% in HAART-naïve patients (P=0.20), and 24% in HIV-negative controls (P=0.28). Among several possible risk factors for hypertension, only body mass index (BMI) was found to be a confounder. BMI was similar in HAART-treated and HAART-naïve patients but elevated in controls compared to HAART-treated patients. After adjustment for BMI, the prevalence of hypertension in HIV-negative controls was slightly lower than that in patients on HAART (P=0.29). The results demonstrated a prevalence of hypertension in patients on HAART similar to that in HIV-negative controls. The prevalence of hypertension was somewhat higher in patients on HAART compared to HAART-naïve patients, but the difference was not statistically significant. Considering the marked drop in mortality following antiretroviral therapy, we conclude that the possible influence of HAART on the prevalence of hypertension appears to be a minor problem.