Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) is believed to be rare in the developing world and no large prospective Indian series have been reported to date. The present study was conducted to study the clinical profile and outcome of PCP in patients with HIV infection.
All HIV positive patients with PCP admitted over 4 years (2000-2003) to a tertiary referral centre in Mumbai were prospectively studied.
There were 38 patients with proven PCP from 300 HIV admissions. The patients with PCP were predominantly male (M: F = 5.4:1), with a mean age of 40.1 years. The median CD4 count of the PCP group was 96 cells/microL. Bronchoscopy was needed to make a definitive diagnosis in 17 of the 38 patients. PCP co-existed with tuberculosis in 4 of the 38 patients. The mortality of the group was high at 15.8% with all patients needing ventilatory support dying.
PCP is not an uncommon infection in Indians with advanced HIV. Lack of recognition has probably been responsible for the absence of any large series from this country. In our series of hospitalised HIV positive patients, PCP was the second commonest pulmonary disease after tuberculosis accounting for 32% of pulmonary admissions and 13 % of all HIV positive admissions.
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