Erick Ntambwe Kamangu, Ben Ilunga Bulanda, Berry Ikolango Bongenia, Huguette Tshweka Botomwito, Georges Lelo Mvumbi, Patrick De Mol, Dolores Vaira, Marie-Pierre Hayette, Richard Lunganza Kalala


Background: Viral Load (VL), CD4 T cells count and clinical signs are significant parameters for the decision of starting ARV Treatment (ART). The aim of this study is to determine the Viral Load profile of eligible patients on treatment in the centers according to the algorithm used in Kinshasa and the DRC. Methodology: Our sample consisted of 153 HIV-positive patients naive of ART. All patients aged over 18 years were included in the study without gender discrimination. The determination of the VL was made at the laboratory of Molecular Biology of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Kinshasa using a previously described technique. Results: Of the 153 patients included in the study, 92 (60.1%) were women. The age of the patients was in the range 18 – 65 years with a mean of 37 years. Most patients (91.5%) were clinical stage 3, while the rest (8.5%) were clinical stage 4 for HIV infection. The rates of CD4 T lymphocytes were between 8 and 915 cells/mm3 with a median value of 180 cells/mm3. Seventy nine patients (86.8%) had CD4 count below 500 cells/mm3. The median VL of patients is 5.68 log10 RNA copies/ml. The minimum and maximum values are respectively 0.37 and 7.95 log10 RNA copies/ml. Conclusion: The majority of patients (63.4%) in Kinshasa begin antiretroviral treatment with a poor prognosis. The Viral loads are usually very high in these patients and CD4 quite collapsed. Indeed, the median value of CD4 for the patients is 180 cells/mm3 for the population, while the mean value of Viral Load is 5.48 log10 RNA copies/ml.

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