ASSESSMENT OF THE NUTRITIONAL STATUS, CARE AND SUPPORT OF PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS IN NSUKKA LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, ENUGU STATE ()
The nutritional status, care and support of people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHIV/AIDS) in Nsukka L.G.A of Enugu State was studied at Bishop Shanahan Hospital. The hospital is a HIV counseling and testing (HCT) centre. Descriptive and laboratory analysis were adopted for the study. A total of two hundred and forty three respondents only constituted the sample for the study. Questionnaire, anthropometry, biochemical tests and proximate analysis of foods eaten by PLWHIV/AIDS were the instruments for data collection. Method of data analysis for the questionnaire was statistical package for Social Sciences (SPSS), version 15.The body mass index data were categorized using WHO standard to determine the levels of weight. Analysis of variance was used for data from laboratory analysis. The result of the study showed that 36.6% of the subjects were aged between 26-35 years. There were more men (53.37%) than women (46.5%).The highest educational level of the subjects was WASC/SSCE/GCE.
About half of the subjects (49.8%) ate food three times daily, while 51.9% affirmed poverty as reason for skipping meals. Most preferred food group of the PLWHIV/AIDS was vegetables (85.2%) taken once a day, 82.8% of subjects took fats and oil twice a day and 40.3% chose vegetables three times a day. Bitter leaf soup was the preferred soup of the subjects. The most observed clinical symptom was fever and by men (23.1%) and women 20.4%.Forty percent of the subjects were on anti retroviral therapy (ART) and within this group, 60% were on combined ART (nevirapine, stavudine and zidovudine). The greatest social support was from the wives (39.5%) and most PLWHIV/AIDS (80%) protected their spouses/sex partners against HIV infection with condom. The mean height, weight, BMI, packed cell volume (PCV) and CD4 count of the men were 1.67 ± 0.01m, 60.76 ± 0.34kg, 23.01 ± 0.5 kg/m2, 29.61 ±0.16g and 469.23 ± 0.02 cells/ul, respectively. The mean height, weight, BMI, PCV and CD4 count recorded for women were 1.61 ± 0.06m, 59.81 ±0.1kg, 21.03 ± 0.0kg/m2, 29.01 ± 0.21g and 432.08 ± 0.20 cells/ul respectively.