, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 23-32
Date: 25 Jul 2008

Correlates of Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy in HIV-Infected Children in Lomé, Togo, West Africa

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We assessed pediatric adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) and examined associated factors among children in Togo, West Africa. Structured interviews of caregivers of consecutively enrolled HIV-infected children receiving ART in three HIV/AIDS care centers in Lome, Togo were conducted. Child perfect adherence reflected caregivers’ report of no antiretroviral drug doses missed neither in the past 4 days nor in the month before the interview. A total of 74 ART-treated children were included (median age 6 years). Of these, 42% of caregivers declared perfect adherence. In univariate analyses, the major factors relating to child non-adherence were: being female, living in an individual setting (vs. compound with enlarged family), receiving other ART than an NNRT-based regimen, drug regimens with six pills/spoons or more per day, caregiver other than biological parent, caregiver not declaring HIV-status, not participating to support groups and having perceived difficulty of antiretroviral (ARV) administration. In multivariate analysis, female gender, living in an individual setting, receiving other than NNRTI-based regimen and caregivers’ perceived difficulty of ARV administration remained independently associated with the reported child’s non-adherence. These data show low rates of perfect adherence to ART in children in West Africa, influenced by child and caregiver characteristics and suggest a need for counseling and education interventions as well as continuous psychological and social support.