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close this bookNational Guidelines for the Clinical Management of HIV/AIDS - Tanzania (NACP; 2005; 131 pages)
View the documentLIST OF ABBREVIATIONS
View the documentACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
View the documentFOREWORD
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 2: ORGANIZATION OF HIV/AIDS CARE AND TREATMENT
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 3: HIV/AIDS PREVENTION
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 4: PROTECTIVE MEASURES AGAINST HIV TRANSMISSION
close this folderCHAPTER 5: LABORATORY TESTS IN HIV/AIDS
close this folder5.1 Tests for HIV Diagnosis
View the document5.1.1 HIV Diagnosis in Adults and Children over 18 months
View the document5.1.2 Diagnosing HIV infection in children under 18 months
View the document5.1.3 HIV Diagnostic Protocol for Abandoned Infants
View the document5.2 Tests for treatment eligibility and efficacy monitoring
Open this folder and view contents5.3 Tests for treatment safety monitoring
View the document5.4 Laboratory Safety Procedures
View the document5.5 Phlebotomy Safety Procedures
View the document5.6 Sample Storage Procedures
View the document5.7 Sample Transportation Procedure
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 6: HIV/AIDS AND PREGNANCY
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 7: PEDIATRIC HIV/AIDS AND RELATED CONDITIONS
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 8: COMMUNITY AND HOME BASED CARE FOR PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS (PLHA)
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 9: COUNSELLING RELATED TO HIV-TESTING AND TREATMENT ADHERENCE
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 10: MANAGEMENT OF COMMON SYMPTOMS AND OPPORTUNISTIC INFECTIONS IN HIV/AIDS
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 11: MANAGEMENT OF MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS IN HIV/AIDS
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 12: MANAGEMENT OF HIV INFECTED PATIENTS USING ANTIRETROVIRAL DRUGS
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 13: ARV THERAPY IN INFANTS AND CHILDREN
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 14: USE OF ARVS IN SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 15: HIV/AIDS AND NUTRITION
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 16: MANAGEMENT OF ANTIRETROVIRAL MEDICINES
Open this folder and view contentsCHAPTER 17: CERTIFICATION OF HEALTHCARE FACILITIES AS CARE AND TREATMENT SITES
 

5.1.2 Diagnosing HIV infection in children under 18 months

At present, the majority of infants are diagnosed on the basis of symptomatic HIV disease and the positive HIV antibody test of the mother of the child. The child of an HIV infected mother can acquire HIV antibodies from his/her mother during pregnancy and via breast milk if breastfed. These may persist in his or her blood until 15-18 months of age, even if the child is not infected with HIV. Thus a child may test HIV positive by an antibody test (e.g. rapid test or ELISA) without actually being infected.

HIV antibody tests (e.g. rapid and ELISA) should not be performed on young infants given the fact that these may measure maternal antibody. Care should be taken not to mislabel a child by assigning an HIV positive status if the mother is HIV positive. The correct term to use for a child is HIV exposed. No child under 18 months of age should be labelled HIV-positive based on HIV rapid test or ELISA antibody detection methods.

HIV infection can be diagnosed in most infected infants by the age 6 weeks by using the DNA PCR technique where available


Figure 2: HIV Testing by PCR for Children below 18 months of age

Note: A second specimen is necessary for PCR to confirm an initial positive result.
If PCR is unavailable: continue cotrimoxazole and regular monthly clinical monitoring.


For all children determined to be HIV negative but are still being breastfed by HIV+ mothers, appropriate counselling should be given to the mother on the risks and potential for HIV transmission to the child.

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