Incidence of Human Immunodeficiency Virus in Sickle Cell Patients in the Cape Coast Metropolis, Ghana


Context: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a well-known pathogen that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). The course of HIV infection and progression may be influenced by sickle cell traits. Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine the incidence of HIV among sickle cell patients in the Cape Coast metropolis. Methods: A cross sectional study was conducted among patients who visited the Central Regional Hospital, Cape Coast. About 2 ml of blood sample was drawn from each participant for sickle cell test using sodium metabisulphite solution. Sickle cell positive samples were selected and tested for the presence of HIV using Alere DetermineTM HIV-1/2. Results: A total of 75 patients made up of 25 males and 50 females were enrolled. Their age ranges between 4 to 59 years (27, 1 - 15 years; 24, 16 - 30 years; 17, 31 - 45 years; 7, 46 - 60 years). Fifteen (15) (20%) had received at least a single blood transfusion while the remaining 60 (80%) had never received blood transfusion before the study. Thirty-six patients (48.0%) were married and the other 39 patients (52.0%) were single. Five patients (6.7%) had antibodies to HIV whereas 70 patients (93.3%) were not with the virus. Conclusion: The incidence rate of HIV among sickle cell trait children and the youths of Cape Coast metropolis were found to be 6.7%. This may suggest that sickle cell traits in children and the youth may be associated with HIV transmission.

Share and Cite:

Baah, A. , Azumah, D. , Ampiah, C. , Boampong, J. and Nuvor, S. (2014) Incidence of Human Immunodeficiency Virus in Sickle Cell Patients in the Cape Coast Metropolis, Ghana. World Journal of AIDS, 4, 338-345. doi: 10.4236/wja.2014.43040.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] UNAIDS (2013) UNAIDS Reports on the Global AIDS Epidemic 2013.
[2] GAC (2012) Central Region Tops HIV Prevalence in Ghana. Ghana Aids Commission.
[3] Martinez, J. and Temesgen, Z. (2006) Opportunistic Infections in Patients with HIV and AIDS. Fungal and Parasitic Infections. Le Journal Medical Libanais, 54, 84-90.
[4] Jenerette, C.M. and Brewer, C. (2010) Health-Related Stigma in Young Adults with Sickle Cell Disease. Journal of the National Medical Association, 102, 1050-1055.
[5] Bagasra, O., Steiner, R.M., Ballas, S.K., Castro, O., Dornadula, G., Embury, S., Jungkind, D., Bobroski, L., Kutlar, A. and Burchott, S. (1998) Viral Burden and Disease Progression in HIV-1-Infected Patients with Sickle Cell Anemia. American Journal of Hematology, 59, 199-207.<199::AID-AJH4>3.0.CO;2-L
[6] Castro, O., Saxinger, C., Barnes, S., Alexander, S., Flagg, R., et al. (1990) Prevalence of Antibodies to Human Immunodeficiency Virus and to Human T Cell Leukemia Virus Type I in Transfused Sickle Cell Disease Patients. The Journal of Infectious Diseases, 162, 743-745.
[7] Emodi, I.J. and Okafor, G.O. (1998) Clinical Manifestations of HIV Infection in Children at Enugu, Nigeria. Journal of Tropical Pediatrics, 44, 73-76.
[8] Sellier, P., Masson, E., Zini, J.M., Simoneau, G., Magnier, J.D., et al. (2009) Disease Progression in HIV-1-Infected Patients Heterozygous for the Sickle Hemoglobin Gene. Aids, 23, 2362-2364.
[9] Nekhai, S., Kumari, N. and Dhawan, S. (2013) Role of Cellular Iron and Oxygen in the Regulation of HIV-1 Infection. Future Virology, 8, 301-311.
[10] Ubesie, A., Emodi, I., Ikefuna, A. and Ilechukwu, G. (2012) Prevalence of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Transmission among Transfused Children with Sickle Cell Anemia in Enugu Nigeria. Annals of Medical and Health Sciences Research, 2, 109-113.
[11] Tshilolo, L.M., Mukendi, R.K. and Wembonyama, S.O. (2007) Blood Transfusion Rate in Congolese Patients with Sickle Cell Anemia. Indian Journal of Pediatrics, 74, 735-738.
[12] Okpala, I. (1998) The Management of Crisis in Sickle Cell Disease. European Journal of Haematology, 60, 1-6.
[13] Ocak, S., Kaya, H., Cetin, M., Gali, E. and Ozturk, M. (2006) Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C in Patients with Thalassemia and Sickle Cell Anemia in a Long-Term Follow-Up. Archives of Medical Research, 37, 895-898.
[14] Ogunrinde, G.O., Keshinro, M.I. and Ige, S.O. (2005) HIV Seropositivity in Children with Sickle Cell Disease. Annals of African Medicine, 4, 104-106.
[15] Aidoo, M., Terlouw, D.J., Kolczak, M.S., McElroy, P.D., ter Kuile, F.O., Kariuki, S., et al. (2002) Protective Effects of the Sickle Cell Gene against Malaria Morbidity and Mortality. Lancet, 359, 1311-1312.
[16] Danquah, I., Ziniel, P., Eggelte, T.A., Ehrhardt, S. and Mockenhaupt, F.P. (2010) Influence of Haemoglobins S and C on Predominantly Asymptomatic Plasmodium Infections in Northern Ghana. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 104, 713-719.
[17] Ohene-Frimpong, K., Bonney, A., Tetteh, H. and Nkrumah, F.K. (2005) 270 Newborn Screening for Sickle Cell Disease in Ghana. Pediatric Research, 58, 401.
[18] Nouraie, M., Nekhai, S. and Gordeuk, V.R. (2012) Sickle Cell Disease Is Associated with Decreased HIV but Higher HBV and HCV Comorbidities in US Hospital Discharge Records: A Cross-Sectional Study. Sexually Transmitted Infections, 88, 528-533.
[19] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC (2012) Estimated HIV Incidence among Adults and Adolescents in the United States, 2007-2010. HIV Surveillance Supplement Report, 4, 17.
[20] Angyo, I.A., Okpeh, E.S. and Onah, J. (1998) Paediatric AIDS in Jos, Nigeria. West African Journal of Medicine, 17, 268-272.
[21] Williams, T.N., Mwangi, T.W., Roberts, D.J., Alexander, N.D., Weatherall, D.J., Wambua, S., et al. (2005) An Immune Basis for Malaria Protection by the Sickle Cell Trait. PLoS Medicine, 2, Article ID: e128.
[22] Williams, T.N. (2006) Human Red Blood Cell Polymorphisms and Malaria. Current Opinion in Microbiology, 9, 388-394.
[23] Akinbami, A.D.A., Adediran, A., Oshinaike, O., Adebola, P. and Arogundade, O. (2012) Haematological Values in Homozygous Sickle Cell Disease in Steady State and Haemoglobin Phenotypes AA Controls in Lagos, Nigeria. BMC Research Notes, 5, 396.
[24] Olaniyi, J.A., Otegbayo, J.A., Omotosho, I.A. and Olomu, O.O. (2009) Transfusion Related Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) Infection in Sickle Cell Disease Patients. African Journal of Biomedical Research, 12, 69-71.

Copyright © 2023 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.