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Children with HIV/AIDS might benefit from immunisation
Thursday 13 January 2005
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MALAWI: Children with HIV/AIDS might benefit from immunisation


[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]


JOHANNESBURG, 19 September (PLUSNEWS) - Results of a hospital-based study in Malawi suggest that children infected with HIV/AIDS could potentially benefit from vaccination against rotaviruses, the main cause of severe, dehydrating diarrhoea in infants and young children throughout the world, ‘AIDS Weekly’ reported.

Diarrhoea is a leading cause of illness and death in HIV-infected children. However, use of rotavirus vaccines in HIV positive children was not recommended, pending further research into children infected with both diseases, the report said.

Children younger than five years old, who were treated for acute gastroenteritis at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre, were used in the study. Those with rotavirus diarrhoea, with and without HIV infection, were followed-up for up to four weeks after hospital discharge.

Rotavirus was detected less frequently among children infected with HIV/AIDS than among uninfected children. According to the report, the study should now encourage careful studies on the safety of rotavirus vaccines in HIV-infected infants. Doctors who conducted the study - from Liverpool University and from the Wellcome Trust Research Laboratories in Malawi - concluded that the effects of the rotavirus vaccine on the AIDS virus needed assessment, the report said.

PlusNews is produced under the banner of RHAIN, the Southern African Regional HIV/AIDS Information Service. RHAIN’s members currently include: UNAIDS-ICT/ESA, IRIN, SAfAIDS, PANOS, Health Systems Trust, Health Development Networks, GTZ/Afronets.

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