Oral candidiasis and oral yeast carriage among institutionalised South African paediatric HIV/AIDS patients
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- Blignaut, E. Mycopathologia (2007) 163: 67. doi:10.1007/s11046-006-0087-9
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South Africa currently has an estimated 500,000 AIDS orphans, many of whom are HIV-positive. Oral candidiasis commonly occurs in both adult and paediatric HIV/AIDS patients. Published information on HIV-positive children in Africa mainly concerns hospitalised patients. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of oral candidiasis and oral yeast carriage among paediatric HIV/AIDS patients residing in orphanages in Gauteng, South Africa, and to compare the prevalence of isolated yeast species with species obtained from adult HIV/AIDS patients. Eighty-seven paediatric HIV/AIDS patients residing in five homes were examined and a swab taken from the dorsal surface of the tongue, cultured on CHROMagar and yeast isolates identified with the ATB 32C commercial system. The species prevalence of 57 identified isolates was compared with that of 330 isolates from adult HIV/AIDS patients. Twelve (13.8%) children presented with clinically detectable candidiasis. Yeasts were isolated from 0% to 53% of children in the individual homes, with Candida albicans (40.4%) and C. dubliniensis (26.3%) constituting the most frequently isolated species. Gentian violet prophylaxis was administered in one particular home and a higher carriage rate (66.6%) of non-C. albicans and non-C. dubliniensis was observed among these children. The prevalence of C. albicans was lower while the prevalence of C. dubliniensis, C. glabrata and C. tropicalis was significantly higher (p ≤ 0.001) among the children than among adult HIV/AIDS patients. These findings indicate a role for yeast culture and species determination in cases with candidiasis in institutionalized paediatric HIV/AIDS patients.