The incidence of HIV-1 infections in village populations of northern Thailand

Kenrad E. Nelson, Vinai Suriyanon, Ellen Taylor, Tasanai Wongchak, Chamnong Kingkeow, Namtip Srirak, Chawin Lertsrimongkol, Wipada Cheewawat, David Celentano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Objectives: To determine the age- and sex-specific prevalence of HIV-1 infection in a general ambulatory population in northern Thailand in 1990 and 1992, and the incidence of HIV-1 infections between 1990 and 1992. Design: Health fairs were held in five villages in Chiang Mai province in northern Thailand between December 1989 and January 1990 and again in January 1992. Participation of all village residents was encouraged. Villagers were offered testing for serological markers of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and free HBV vaccine was made available to susceptible individuals. Methods: Sera from the two surveys were linked and coded by demographic characteristics (age group and sex). Individual identifiers were removed and the sera tested for HIV-1 antibodies by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay with Western blot confirmation. Results: In 1990, 21 out of 1161 (1.8%) individuals were HIV-1-seropositive; the infection rates were 3.3% in men and 0.5% in women. In 1992, 44 out of 956 (4.6%) individuals were HIV-1-seropositive. Among people included in both surveys the 2-year incidence was 2.0% in women and 4.1% in men (annual incidence, 1.0 and 2.05%, respectively); however, among men over the age of 14 years the 2-year incidence was 6.3%, whereas among women of this age the 2-year incidence was 1.8% (annual incidence, 3.15 and 0.9%, respectively). Among men, incident HIV-1 infections were common, even among those aged 50 years or more. Conclusions: Infections with HIV-1 are disturbingly frequent and increasing among adult populations in semi-rural areas of northern Thailand. In order to contain further spread of the epidemic public-health strategies targeted to the general public, including those in rural areas, will be needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)951-955
Number of pages5
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1994


  • AIDS
  • Commercial sex workers
  • Heterosexual HIV transmission
  • Incident HIV
  • Thailand

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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