Background: HIV infection is a major public health problem as it has dramatically increased the global burden of disease. HIV infected patients experience a variety of clinical signs and symptoms.
Objective: Our objective was to study the profile of clinical features and opportunistic infections in HIV infected patients attending a tertiary care medical college hospital in Hassan, Karnataka.
Materials and Methods: A total of 124 HIV infected patients attending the ART Centre and the ICTC of Hassan Institute of Medical Sciences, Hassan, Karnataka were enrolled in the study, after obtaining informed consent. Clinical symptoms were recorded by direct questioning. Documented opportunistic infections were noted from patient records.
Results: 80 (64.5%) HIV positive patients were males and 44 (35.5%) females. Mean age of the patients was 36.5 ± 6.0 years. The common symptoms were lethargy and fatigue 90 (72.5%), prolonged fever 86 (69.3%), weakness 84 (67.7%), body-ache and joint pain 84 (67.7%), loss of appetite 82 (66.1%), weight loss 80 (64.5%), cough (44.5%), chronic diarrhoea 68 (54.8%) and Nausea and Vomiting 64 (51.6%).The overall proportion of symptomatic patients was significantly higher than the number with etiologically documented opportunistic infections (41.9%). Pulmonary tuberculosis (37.9%) was the most frequently documented opportunistic infection.
Conclusion: Affordable high quality laboratory diagnostic facilities for the diagnosis of opportunistic infections under the public health program will help to obtain an accurate picture of the range of opportunistic infections in HIV patients in India.
Key words: Maternal and Child Health; Utilization; Sub-Center