Effect of HIV infection on body composition and fat distribution in rwandan women

Eugene Mutimura, Kathryn Anastos, Zheng Lin, Mardge Cohen, Agnes Binagwaho, Donald P. Kotler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Objective: To assess the association of HIV infection with body weight and composition in Rwandan women. Design: Body weight and composition, the latter determined by bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) and by anthropometry, were compared in 620 HIV-positive and 211 HIV-negative participants. Associations of HIV with body composition were assessed, and t tests compared the groups. Results: HIV-positive women were younger (-7.0 years, P < .001) and shorter (-2.1 cm, P < .001). Mean body weight, body mass index (BMI), total body fat, and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) were similar. Mean fat-free mass was 2.5% greater in HIV-negative participants, and 19% of HIV-positive group had BMI <18.5 kg/m2 versus 26% of the HIV-negative group (P < .05). CD4 counts and body composition were not associated. Conclusions: Malnutrition was common in this cohort of Rwandan women. However, HIV infection was not associated with nutritional status. Factors other than malnutrition may influence quality-of-life outcomes in HIV-infected Rwandan women. Initiatives to improve nutritional status should be population-wide and not restricted to the HIV-infected population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-178
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the International Association of Physicians in AIDS Care
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Body composition
  • Fat distribution
  • HIV
  • Malnutrition
  • Rwanda
  • Women

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Dermatology
  • Infectious Diseases


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