Epidemiologic evaluation of toxoplasmosis and leading risk factors in HIV/AIDS patients in Arak City, Iran

Reza Aghaee, Sassan Saki, Mojtaba Didehdar, Reza Hajihossein, Zahra Eslamirad


Toxoplasmosis is a common opportunistic infection that can be fatal in immunocompromised individuals, such as those with HIV/AIDS.

Considering the rising incidence of HIV/AIDS in human populations worldwide and the high risk of toxoplasmosis among these patients, the current epidemiologic study was conducted to identify the characteristics and leading risk factors of toxoplasmosis among HIV/AIDS patients in Arak City, Marzaki Province, Iran.

This cross-sectional study was conducted in HIV patients under the care and counselling of the local health centre of Arak City. We included a total of 49 patients with HIV/AIDS who completed a written informed consent form and a two-part questionnaire. Demographic data and information about various risk factors were collected in the questionnaire. Blood samples were collected from each patient. Anti-Toxoplasma gondii IgG and IgM antibody assays and PCR were conducted on serum samples. Logistic regression and chi-squared (χ2) tests were used for statistical analysis. P values less than 0.05 (p < 0.05) were considered significant.

Of the study participants, 22.4 per cent were Toxoplasma seropositive, with 20.4 per cent and 2 per cent being IgG- and IgM-positive, respectively. Among the participants, those who had occupational exposure to soil had the highest risk for toxoplasmosis (p < 0.043, OR=7.243).

The seroprevalence of toxoplasmosis in HIV/AIDS patients is lower in Arak than in the general population in most parts of Iran. This is possibly owing to racial and geographic differences.
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