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Fracture Rates Slightly Higher in HIV Patients

Significant difference in fracture rates in the period between 2000 and 2002

FRIDAY, March 25 (HealthDay News) -- People with HIV infection have a higher bone fracture rate compared to the general U.S. population, according to a study published online March 10 in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

Benjamin Young, M.D., of the Rocky Mountain Center for AIDS Research, Education, and Services in Denver, and colleagues investigated whether HIV-infected persons have a higher fracture rate compared to the general population. They analyzed data from 5,826 participants in the HIV Outpatient Study (HOPS), assessing rates of first fracture from 2000 to 2008. Fracture rates were compared to the general population, using data from the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, and factors associated with fractures were examined.

The researchers found that, among HOPS patients, the age-standardized fracture rates increased significantly between 2000 and 2002. For individuals aged 25 to 54 years, the fracture rate and the relative proportion of fragility fractures were higher among HOPS patients compared to the general population. Factors associated with incident fractures included older age, substance abuse, a nadir CD4+ cell count <200 cells/mm3, hepatitis C infection, and diabetes.

"Incident first fracture rates increased slightly during the period 2000 to 2008, with the increase occurring mostly during 2000 to 2002," the authors write. "The slight annual increase in fracture rates among the HOPS patients might reflect a true increase as HIV-infected patients experience improved survival or an improved capture of fracture data within the HOPS because of increasing awareness of bone health issues, or both."

One of the study authors disclosed financial ties to several pharmaceutical companies.

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