HIV Status Discordance: Associated Factors Among HIV Positive Pregnant Women in Lagos, Southwest Nigeria

Innocent AO Ujah


The HIV negative partner in a HIV serodiscordant relationship is at high risk of becoming HIV infected. The annual risk of HIV infection for a partner of a person with HIV is about 10%, with higher annual transmission rates of 20–25% per year reported in Rwanda and Zambia. Although there is considerable variation across countries, recent studies in southern and east Africa countries with mature epidemics reported that up to two-thirds of infected persons in stable relationship are discordant. HIV serodiscordance is thus a recognized priority for HIV prevention intervention. In Nigeria only few studies have studied the burden of serodiscordance, making planning difficult. In this study HIV serodiscordance rate and associated factors among pregnant women were assessed in a large PMTCT clinic in Lagos Nigeria over a 9 years period. Information on HIV status disclosure, partners HIV status (confirmed by HIV test results), sociodemographic characteristics and reproductive information were obtained from the women after enrollment and entered into the case file. In the study, relevant information was managed with SPSS for windows version 19.0. The variables independently associated with HIV status discordance were determined in both univariate and multivariate analysis. P values and Odd ratio with their confidence intervals were calculated. Out of the 4435 women enrolled during the study period, 3712 (83.7%) had disclosed their status to their partner. Partner’s HIV status among the women with confirmed HIV status was negative in 2065 (66.8%) women, thus a discordant rate of 66.8%. HIV status disclosure rate was 83.7%; with significantly higher disclosure rate in concordant couple (83.3%) compared to 76.8% among women in serodiscordant relationship (p=0.00; OR: 1.5; 95% CI: 1.25-1.82). Discordant HIV status in a female positive relationship was found to be associated with history of at least two termination of pregnancy (OR: 3.05; 95% CI: 2.91-3.89) and five or more total life time sexual partnership (OR: 2.3; 95% CI: 1.27-3.21). The perception that men are the index cases is not supported by evidence from this study. We recommend the tracking of both men and women as index cases in other to reduce HIV transmission within stable relationship. Social marketing aimed at reducing concurrency should focus on both male and females, if we must reduce new HIV infection within stable relationships. (Afr J Reprod Health 2015; 19[2]: 108-116).


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