Comorbidity Indices in People With HIV and Considerations for Coronavirus Disease 2019 Outcomes

Alan Winston; Davide De Francesco; Frank Post; Marta Boffito; Jaime Vera; Ian Williams; Jane Anderson; Patrick W.G. Mallon; Caroline A. Sabin


AIDS. 2020;34(12):1795-1800. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Objective: To determine comorbidity indices in people with HIV (PWH) and lifestyle-similar HIV-negative controls.

Design: Cross-sectional analysis of the Pharmacokinetic and clinical Observations in PeoPle over fiftY cohort study in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Methods: The Elixhauser Comorbidity Index (ECI), Charlson Comorbidity Index and the Comorbidity Burden Index were compared between older PWH and HIV-negative controls using the Mann–Whitney U test; the magnitude of the difference between groups was quantified using the r effect size.

Results: The 699 PWH and 304 HIV-negative controls were predominantly male (87.5% vs. 64.0%), white (86.3% vs. 90.0%) and had median ages of 57 and 58 years, respectively. Among PWH, the median (interquartile range) CD4+ T-cell count was 624 (475, 811) cells/μl; 98.7% were on antiretroviral therapy. The median (interquartile range) ECI was 0 (0, 8) and 0 (−3, 1), Charlson Comorbidity Index was 2 (1, 5) and 1 (0, 1) and Comorbidity Burden Index 8.6 (2.2, 16.8) and 5.9 (0.6, 10.8), respectively. While all three indices were significantly higher in PWH than in controls (P < 0.001 for each), the magnitude of the differences between the two groups were small to medium, with effect sizes (95% confidence interval) of 0.21 (0.16, 0.27), 0.38 (0.32, 0.42) and 0.18 (0.11, 0.23), respectively.

Conclusion: These three comorbidity indices are higher in PWH compared with HIV-negative controls, although the magnitude of differences between groups were small. Differences in the ECI, reportedly associated with poorer coronavirus disease 2019 outcomes, were driven by more individuals with HIV being within the higher end of the range.