African-Americans receiving antiretroviral (ARV) treatment for HIV have higher rates of health conditions associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD), aidsmap reports. Compared with their non-Black peers, they have higher rates of diabetes, chronic kidney disease and high blood pressure.

Publishing their findings in Clinical Infectious Diseases, researchers studied data on approximately 51,000 HIV-positive members of the North American AIDS Cohort Collaboration on Research and Design (NA-ACCORD), looking at those who received ARVs between 2000 and 2013. NA-ACCORD included a respective 20, 22 and 16 cohorts that provided data on diabetes, chronic kidney disease and high blood pressure.

The study members were followed for a median five years, for a cumulative 288,000 years. Eighty-three percent were male, 44 percent were Black and 84 percent were younger than 50. Two thirds of the cohort began ARVs before 2006.

The per-year rates of the first diagnosis of the three diseases were: 2.6 percent for high blood pressure; 1.2 percent for diabetes and 0.6 percent for chronic kidney disease. The median age of study members when diagnosed with these conditions was between 48 and 51 years old.

After adjusting the data to account for age, risk group (e.g., injection drug users versus men who have sex with men) and other HIV-related factors, the researchers found that compared with non-Blacks, African-American women and men were a respective 1.8 and 1.5 times more likely to be diagnosed with high blood pressure.

Compared with non-Black men, non-Black women and Black women and men were a respective 1.4, 1.4 and 2 times more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes while Black and non-Black women were each 1.5 times more likely to be diagnosed with chronic kidney disease.

After adjusting the data for body-mass index (BMI), the researchers found that these racial and sex differences persisted.

For the entire study cohort, the estimated cumulative incidence of each of the three diseases by age 70, broken down by race and sex, ranged from 51 percent to 73 percent for high blood pressure, 34 percent to 52 percent for diabetes and 25 percent to 38 percent for chronic kidney disease. 

To read the aidsmap article, click here.

To read the study abstract, click here.