Haematological and Biochemical Changes in Patients on Anti-Retroviral Drugs

Background: Haematological and biochemical abnormalities are among the most common clinical pathological manifestation of HIV patients on HAART (Highly Antiretroviral therapy). Not only that the illness itself is fatal but the potential antiretroviral drugs meant to at least prolong life of hopeful victims still predispose them to other possible adverse effects that are detrimental.
Experimental design: Ten (10) confirmed HIV positive HAART patients who has taken the drugs from 4 months, 7 months, one year, 2 years, 4 years, 5 years and 7 years and a HIV negative patient were screened for haematological and biochemical changes. Haematological changes were assessed using Coulter Ac-T differential analyzer and biochemical parameters (bilirubin, urea, creatinine, electrolyte ions, ALP, AST and ALT) assayed spectrophotometrically.
Results: Kidney assessment shows that the urea values for most of the HIV patients are significantly (p<0.05) greater than the control while only two are relatively normal. But in creatinine all are relatively normal. The electrolyte, values indicates that Na+, Cl- and HCO3 - are significantly (p<0.005) lower than the control value while K+ are relatively normal compared to the control. The ratio of high urea to low creatinine and low electrolyte indicate mild kidney toxicity. For liver function test, the ALP values are significantly (p<0.05) higher than the control value. Most of the ALP and AST values also increased compared to the control value. But the bilirubin is normal. This indicates a mild liver disturbance as drug administration is prolonged. For haematological value, there is a low PCV value and variable value of CD4 level, but mostly high for some, i.e., significantly (p<0.05) increased to that of the control. This shows progression of anti-retroviral drugs given. The Haemogloobin is normal for the first 1-7 years of drug administration.
Conclusion: Administration of Highly Anti-retroviral Drugs showed progressive immune system repairs, but the adverse effect is severe as it tends to hepatoxicity, renal kidney injury and anemia if administration of drug is prolonged.

Author(s): Omodamiro OD and Jimoh MA

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