Original Research

Trends in body mass index in the pre-dolutegravir period in South Africa

Florian van Ginkel, Roos E. Barth, Hugo Tempelman, Kerstin Klipstein-Grobusch, Diederick E. Grobbee, Karine Scheuermaier, Francois W.D. Venter, Alinda G. Vos-Seda
Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine | Vol 25, No 1 | a1523 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhivmed.v25i1.1523 | © 2024 Florian van Ginkel, Roos E. Barth, Hugo Tempelman, Kerstin Klipstein-Grobusch, Diederick E. Grobbee, Karine Scheuermaier, Francois W.D. Venter, Alinda G. Vos-Seda | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 29 August 2023 | Published: 23 April 2024

About the author(s)

Florian van Ginkel, Julius Global Health, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands
Roos E. Barth, Department of Infectious Disease, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht University, Utrecht, the Netherlands
Hugo Tempelman, Ndlovu Care Group, Groblersdal, South Africa
Kerstin Klipstein-Grobusch, Julius Global Health, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands; and, Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
Diederick E. Grobbee, Julius Global Health, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands
Karine Scheuermaier, Julius Global Health, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands; and, School of Physiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
Francois W.D. Venter, Department of Ezintsha, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
Alinda G. Vos-Seda, Julius Global Health, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands; and, Department of Ezintsha, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

Abstract

Background: Antiretroviral therapy (ART) is associated with weight gain, but this has been shown to be more marked with dolutegravir and other integrase strand transfer inhibitors.

Objectives: We studied weight gain in people living with HIV (PLWH) on ART compared to the general population in the period before dolutegravir was introduced in a rural South African cohort.

Method: Longitudinal analysis of the Ndlovu Cohort Study including 36–48 months’ follow-up data. From 2014 to 2019, data were collected annually in Limpopo, rural South Africa. Linear mixed models using HIV status, demographics, ART use and cardiovascular risk factors were used to estimate trends in body mass index (BMI) over time.

Results: In total, 1518 adult, non-pregnant participants were included, of whom 518 were PLWH on ART (79.8%), 135 PLWH not yet on ART (20.2%) and 865 HIV-negative. HIV-negative participants had significantly higher BMIs than PLWH on ART at all study visits. There was a significant increase in BMI in all subgroups after 36 months (PLWH on ART, BMI +1.2 kg/m2P < 0.001; PLWH not on ART, BMI +1.8 kg/m2P < 0.001 and HIV-negative, BMI +1.3 kg/m2P < 0.001).

Conclusion: The increase in BMI in PLWH and HIV-negative participants is a serious warning signal as obesity results in morbidity and mortality.


Keywords

body mass index; obesity; sub-Saharan Africa; HIV; antiretroviral therapy; integrase strand transfer inhibitors

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 10: Reduced inequalities

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