Background: Risk factors for influenza hospitalization in Africa are unknown, including the role of HIV. Methods: We conducted a case-control study of risk factors for hospitalized seasonal influenza among persons in rural western Kenya, a high HIV prevalence area, from March 2006- August 2008. Eligible cases were ≥five years old, admitted to health facilities with respiratory symptoms, and had nasopharyngeal/oropharyngeal swab specimens that tested positive for influenza A or B by real-time reverse transcription-PCR. Three randomly selected age-, sex- and neighborhood-matched controls were enrolled per case. A structured questionnaire was administered and home-based HIV testing was performed. Risk factors were evaluated using conditional logistic regression. Results: A total of 64 cases (38 with influenza A and 26 with influenza B) and 190 controls were enrolled. The median age was 16 years (range 5-69 years). Among cases, 24.5% were HIV-infected versus 12.5% of controls (p = 0.004). Among persons ≥18 years old, 13 (59%) of 22 tested cases were HIV-positive compared with 15 (24%) of 62 tested controls (p = 0.005). In multivariable analysis, HIV-infection was associated with hospitalization due to influenza [adjusted Odds Ratio (aOR) 3.56, 95% CI 1.25-10.1]. The mean CD4 count among HIV-infected cases and controls was similar (399 vs. 387, respectively, p = 0.89). Chronic lung disease (aOR 6.83, 95% CI 1.37-34.0) was also associated with influenza hospitalization in multivariable analysis. Active pulmonary tuberculosis was associated with influenza hospitalization in bivariate, but not multivariable, analysis. Conclusions: People with HIV infection and chronic lung disease were at increased risk of hospitalized influenza in rural Kenya. HIV infection is common in many parts of sub-Saharan Africa. Influenza vaccine might prevent severe influenza in these risk groups.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)