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Magnitude of HIV and syphilis seroprevalence among pregnant women in Gondar, Northwest Ethiopia: a cross-sectional study

Authors Melku M, Kebede A, Addis Z

Received 24 January 2015

Accepted for publication 10 March 2015

Published 2 June 2015 Volume 2015:7 Pages 175—182


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Shenghan Lai

Mulugeta Melku,1 Asmarie Kebede,2 Zelalem Addis3

1Department of Hematology and Immuohematology, School of Biomedical and Laboratory Sciences, 2Department of Nursing, University of Gondar Teaching Hospital, 3Department of Medical Microbiology, School of Biomedical and Laboratory Sciences, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Gondar, Gondar, Ethiopia

Background: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and syphilis are major public health problems in sub-Saharan Africa, causing numerous adverse pregnancy outcomes. The aim of study was to assess the magnitude of HIV and syphilis seroprevalence among pregnant women at University of Gondar Teaching Hospital.
Method: The study was conducted between March and May, 2012. Sociodemographic data were collected through face-to-face interview. HIV1/2 was tested following current national HIV1/2 testing algorithm. Syphilis infection was also tested using the rapid plasm reagin test for screening and Treponema pallidum hemagglutination as a confirmatory test. Both bivariate and multivariate analysis were used to identify factors associated with HIV and syphilis seroprevalence from selected sociodemographic variables.
Results: Of 300 women, 31 (10.33%), eleven (3.7%), and three (1%) were seroreactive for HIV, syphilis, and HIV–syphilis coinfection, respectively. High seroprevalence of HIV was found in women ages 25–30 years (13.4%), and women whose husbands attended primary school (19.7%). Syphilis was high in women occupationally housewives (15.2%) and whose husbands were illiterate (11.5%). HIV was associated with husband illiteracy (AOR [adjusted odds ratio] of 4.13, 95% CI [confidence interval] [1.01, 16.95]) and primary educational level of husbands (AOR [95% CI] =3.83 [1.50, 9.90]), whereas syphilis was associated with illiteracy of husband (AOR [95% CI] =7.25 [1.74, 30.30]).
Conclusion: Seroprevalence of HIV and syphilis was high. Low husband educational status was a risk factor for HIV and syphilis. Therefore, substantial efforts have to be made to reinforce prevention strategies and to screen as early as possible to prevent mother-to-child and further horizontal transmission.

Keywords: HIV, magnitude, seroprevalence, syphilis

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