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7 February 2020, 10:34
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No difference found in neural tube defects in HIV positive pregnancies

No difference found in neural tube defects in HIV positive pregnancies - picture 1

Surveillance programmes across the United States have estimated that the prevalence of neural tube defects (NTDs) in children born to mothers with HIV is 7.0 per 10,000 live births, essentially equal to that of general population.

The data, presented in an article published in the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) ‘Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report’, covering 20 jurisdictions in the United States which had the highest numbers of women of reproductive age living with HIV, was drawn from surveillance programmes covering 2013 to 2017.

A five year period from 2013 to 2017 was chosen to best evaluate any birth defects that occurred after the launch of the integrase inhibitor dolutegravir, which was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2013.

This was the first time the CDC had linked both its birth defect surveillance and HIV surveillance programmes, allowing them to draw new inferences from existing data sets.

Analysis of the data found no difference in NTD prevalence in pregnancies of HIV positive mothers with the rate being 7.0 per 10,000 live births, compared to 8.0 per live births in the general population. 

The study’s authors note that currently in the United States an estimated 1 in 9 women living with HIV is undiagnosed, which means their data has not been collected or included in this analysis. 

Reference: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6901a1.htm?s_cid=mm6901a1_w

Author: Tom Hayes

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