Effects of HIV infection and its treatment on self-reported menstrual abnormalities in women

L. Stewart Massad, Charlesnika T. Evans, Howard Minkoff, D. Heather Watts, Ruth M. Greenblatt, Alexandra M. Levine, Kathryn Anastos, Mary Young, David B. Seifer, Elizabeth Golub, Mardge Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Objective: To describe menstrual abnormalities among women with HIV. Methods: Women in a multicenter prospective cohort study of HIV natural history reported menstrual abnormalities every 6-months between October 1994 and September 2002. Logistic regression and Cox proportional-hazards models were applied. Results: The prevalence and incidence of menstrual abnormalities were <20%. HIV serostatus was not associated with prevalent menstrual abnormalities, but in HIV-seropositive women, higher CD4 counts were associated with fewer problems: compared with women with CD4 counts <200/mm3, in women with counts 200-500/mm3, odds ratio (OR) for amenorrhea was 0.55, p = 0.02, and for oligomenorrhea was 0.54, p = 0.0003; for women with counts >500/mm3, OR for amenorrhea was 0.67, p = 0.14, and for oligomenorrhea was 0.55, p = 0.001. HIV serostatus was not associated with incident abnormalities. Highly active anti-retroviral therapy (HAART) use was not associated with prevalent abnormalities, but both HAART use and higher CD4 counts were linked to lower rates of incident menstrual problems. Conclusions: Compared with seronegative women, HIV-seropositive women are at increased risk for some menstrual changes, although the absolute frequency of most abnormalities is low. Higher CD4 counts and HAART protect against incident abnormalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)591-598
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Women's Health
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jun 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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