We conducted a cross-sectional survey to determine the prevalence of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) among pregnant women attending a major hospital in Kassala state, eastern Sudan. Unlinked anonymous testing of residual blood specimens, which were originally collected for other routine clinical purposes, was performed using rapid immunochromatographic assays. In total, 430 residual blood specimens were consecutively collected over a 6-week period (April-May 2010). Specimens from the antenatal clinic (ANC) constituted 50.7% (218/430) of the total whereas specimens from the labour ward accounted for the remaining 49.3% (212/430). The median age of pregnant women was 29 years (range 16-40). The prevalence of HIV-1 infection was 0.23% (1/430) [95% confidence interval = 0.01-1.29%]. The only reactive specimen came from a 20-year-old ANC attendee. We report low HIV prevalence among pregnant women in eastern Sudan but further research is needed to confirm our findings. An integrated framework to diagnose and treat maternal HIV infection should be developed in order to prevent transmission to infants.
- Eastern Sudan
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Infectious Diseases