Noma and Noma-like disease in HIV/AIDS patients, a comorbid interaction: A systematic review
A Systematic Review
Introduction: Noma is an opportunistic polymicrobial infection that cause necrosis of the mouth and face, with high morbidity and mortality, predominantly affecting malnourished children and persons with debilitating diseases. Cases of noma-like disease in adults, although rare, have been increasingly reported in HIV/AIDS patients particularly in developing countries but also in more developed countries.
Methodology: A systematic review of the literature to assess the occurrence and clinical impact of noma and noma-like disease in HIV/AIDS patients was performed on PubMed, Virtual Health Library, Cochrane Library and Google Scholar using the keywords "HIV"[ All Fields] AND "Noma"[All Fields] in December 2016 (years includead for the search: 1985 to 2016).
Results: Twenty-four published studies were identified that document the occurrence of noma or noma-like disease in a total of 133 HIV/AIDS children and adult patients in the last 22 years. Although HIV infection is not the principal risk factor for noma, in some regions may play a substantial role in its pathogenesis. The mortality rate for noma-like disease in HIV/AIDS patients was 54.3%, compared to the 15% mortality rate of treated noma patients without HIV/AIDS. Most of the cases have never been on antiretroviral therapy, and their HIV infection was discovered because of the noma-like disease.
Conclusions: The syndemic interaction between HIV/AIDS and noma-like disease adversely impacts the severity of the disease and the mortality rate. Noma-like disease, although not yet considered a specific or frequent disease associated with HIV infection, should be considered as an opportunistic infection for AIDS.
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