American Journal of Infectious Diseases

Nutritional Status and Quality of Life of Women with HIV/AIDS

Ananya Bhowmik, Padmini Ghugre, Shobha Udipi and Subhasish Kamal Guha

DOI : 10.3844/ajidsp.2012.13.18

American Journal of Infectious Diseases

Volume 8, Issue 1

Pages 13-18


Problem statement: HIV infection is a multisystem disorder which causes chronic infections that lead to profound immune- suppression. Women have always been a vulnerable section of the society. They are doubly vulnerable due to the HIV and malnutrition vicious cycle, which may affect their Quality Of Life (QOL). There are different literature reviews which suggest under-nutrition, wasting due to HIV but it is important to know whether this under-nutrition affects their Quality Of Life (QOL) of these vulnerable women. Approach: This cross sectional study recruited female patients on antiretroviral therapy. Weight, height, grip strength, Tricep Skin Fold (TSF) and Mid Upper Arm Circumference (MUAC) were measured. Nutrient intake was calculated by 24 h recall and food frequency questionnaire. WHO QOL-HIV BREF was used to assess QOL. Results: Among 55 patients, 32 (58.2%), 23 (41.8%) were asymptomatic and symptomatic respectively. The mean adequacies of energy and protein for all the subjects were 57.56 ± 21.89, 61.27 ± 28.50 percent respectively. The Body Mass Index (BMI) of the symptomatic were significantly (p = 0.009) lower than the asymptomatic subjects, the mean being 19.84 ± 3.6 (kg/m2), with 27.3% having BMI < 18.5 (kg/m2). The mean TSF, MUAC, grip strength and hemoglobin level were 10.66 ± 4.36 mm, 23.72 ± 3.43 cm, 16.12 ± 5.03 kg force and 10.8 ± 1.3g/dl respectively. The scores of QOL were correlated positively with all the parameters of nutritional status. Grip strength and hemoglobin level were significantly correlated (p = 0.01) with the scores of four and five domains of QOL respectively. Conclusion: Dietary intake was inadequate, which affected the nutritional status. Conservation of muscle mass and maintenance of hemoglobin levels may improve QOL in HIV infected women. Thus there is a need for nutritional counseling and other nutritional intervention.


© 2012 Ananya Bhowmik, Padmini Ghugre, Shobha Udipi and Subhasish Kamal Guha. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.