Following CDC Recommendations on HIV Testing Unveils Undiagnosed Cases

Following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines established 13 years ago could help identify thousands of patients who have undiagnosed cases of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), in the United States.

Researchers wrote in the April issue of the journal, about their study of whether offering routine HIV testing, as recommended by the CDC, would identify undiagnosed cases of HIV among patients already hospitalized. They discovered that half of the patients who tested positive for HIV would not have been identified had testing not been routinely offered.

The BostonMedicalCenter study involved 243 patients in a study, using medical records of patients from 1999 to 2003. They found that routine testing offers an important opportunity to identify patients with HIV infection.

The CDC outlined such recommendations for testing in certain acute care settings in 1993, but only three studies have since been published assessing the utility of offering routine HIV testing.

Authors include Jeffrey Greenwald, MD, and Catherine Rich, MD, from Boston Medical Center; Samantha Bessega, MD, of Lowell General Hospital in Lowell, Mass.; Michael Posner, of Villanova University in Villanova, Pa.; Jared Lane Maeda, of the University of Illinois in Chicago; and Paul Skolnik, MD, of Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine.

Source: Mayo Clinic