The prevalence of Enterocytozoon bieneusi in acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) patients from the north west of England: 1992-1995.Br J Biomed Sci. 1997 Sep; 54(3):186-91.BJ
Microsporidia are increasingly being recognised as important enteric pathogens in patients with advanced human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) disease, i.e. acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). The aims of this study were to investigate the frequency of detection of microsporidia associated with diarrhoea in patients with advanced HIV disease in the north west of England, and to determine the species involved and their prevalence. During the period from April 1992 to the end of December 1995, chronic diarrhoea in 88 patients in the late stage of HIV disease was investigated. Duodenal biopsies, duodenal aspirates or jejunal biopsies were received from 38 patients, and stool samples from 63 patients, as part of the routine investigation of possible causes of diarrhoea in these patients. Biopsies and aspirates were examined by thin-section electron microscopy (EM), and stool samples were examined by epi-fluorescence microscopy after staining with Calcofluor. Putative stool positives were confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. CD4-lymphocyte counts were available from all patients who provided samples. Nine out of 63 patients (14.3%) were found to be excreting microsporidial spores on stool examination. The species was confirmed as Enterocytozoon bieneusi. The mean CD4-lymphocyte count for this group was 37 x 10(6)/L (normal range 517-1677 x 10(6)/L). Three out of 38 biopsy specimens (7.9%) were also found to be infected with this microsporidian. The mean CD4-lymphocyte count for this group was 72 x 10(6)/L. Encephalitozoon intestinalis was not found in any samples examined. The prevalence of microsporidial infection in AIDS patients in the north west of England appears to be similar to that of patients in London, but less than that reported in studies from other developed countries.