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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 60  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 149-155

The impact of 6-month micronutrient supplementation on viral, immunological, and mental health profile of a cohort of highly active antiretroviral therapy-naive HIV-positive patients in Northern Nigeria

1 Department of Psychiatry, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Zaria, Nigeria
2 Department of Clinical Services, Medical Services Unit, Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Kaduna, Kaduna State, Nigeria
3 Department of Psychiatry, College of Health Sciences, Bingham University, Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria
4 Department of Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria
5 Department of Internal Medicine, Kaduna State University, Kaduna, Kaduna State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Victor Obiajulu Olisah
Department of Psychiatry, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Shika, Zaria, Kaduna State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/nmj.NMJ_74_19

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Background: HIV is a chronic disease with inflammatory reactions involving numerous elements of the immune system, resulting in an increased risk for other physical and psychiatric morbidities. Micronutrients, some of which possess anti-inflammatory properties, may help prevent the development of psychological disorders such as anxiety and depression in people living with HIV disease. Objectives: This study examined the profile of viral load, CD4 cell count, C-reactive protein, anxiety, and depression among highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)-naive HIV-positive patients receiving micronutrient supplementation over a 6-month period. Materials and Methods: A total of ninety HAART-naïve HIV-infected patients completed the Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale. Their blood samples were taken for serum viral load, CD4 cell count, and C-reactive protein at baseline. They all received a micronutrient supplement for 6 months, and 68 participants who remained in treatment at 6 months were reassessed with the same parameters. Results: After 6 months of micronutrient supplementation, the participants were found to have statistically significantly lower mean scores on the anxiety (t-test = 2.970,P = 0.003) and depression (t-test = 3.843,P = 0.001) subscales. They also had statistically significantly lower median CD4 cell count (P = 0.00) and C-reactive protein serum measures (P = 0.04). The median viral load decreased although the difference was not statistically significant. Conclusion: Micronutrient supplementation may reduce inflammatory reactions, anxiety, and depression in HAART-naive HIV-infected persons.

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