Aging-Related Comorbidity Burden Among Women and Men With or At-Risk for HIV in the US, 2008-2019

Lauren F. Collins, Frank J. Palella, C. Christina Mehta, Ja Nae Holloway, Valentina Stosor, Jordan E. Lake, Todd T. Brown, Elizabeth F. Topper, Susanna Naggie, Kathryn Anastos, Tonya N. Taylor, Seble Kassaye, Audrey L. French, Adaora A. Adimora, Margaret A. Fischl, Mirjam Colette Kempf, Susan L. Koletar, Phyllis C. Tien, Ighovwerha Ofotokun, Anandi N. Sheth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Importance: Despite aging-related comorbidities representing a growing threat to quality-of-life and mortality among persons with HIV (PWH), clinical guidance for comorbidity screening and prevention is lacking. Understanding comorbidity distribution and severity by sex and gender is essential to informing guidelines for promoting healthy aging in adults with HIV. Objective: To assess the association of human immunodeficiency virus on the burden of aging-related comorbidities among US adults in the modern treatment era. Design, Setting, and Participants: This cross-sectional analysis included data from US multisite observational cohort studies of women (Women's Interagency HIV Study) and men (Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study) with HIV and sociodemographically comparable HIV-seronegative individuals. Participants were prospectively followed from 2008 for men and 2009 for women (when more than 80% of participants with HIV reported antiretroviral therapy use) through last observation up until March 2019, at which point outcomes were assessed. Data were analyzed from July 2020 to April 2021. Exposures: HIV, age, sex. Main Outcomes and Measures: Comorbidity burden (the number of total comorbidities out of 10 assessed) per participant; secondary outcomes included individual comorbidity prevalence. Linear regression assessed the association of HIV status, age, and sex with comorbidity burden. Results: A total of 5929 individuals were included (median [IQR] age, 54 [46-61] years; 3238 women [55%]; 2787 Black [47%], 1153 Hispanic or other [19%], 1989 White [34%]). Overall, unadjusted mean comorbidity burden was higher among women vs men (3.4 [2.1] vs 3.2 [1.8]; P = .02). Comorbidity prevalence differed by sex for hypertension (2188 of 3238 women [68%] vs 2026 of 2691 men [75%]), psychiatric illness (1771 women [55%] vs 1565 men [58%]), dyslipidemia (1312 women [41%] vs 1728 men [64%]), liver (1093 women [34%] vs 1032 men [38%]), bone disease (1364 women [42%] vs 512 men [19%]), lung disease (1245 women [38%] vs 259 men [10%]), diabetes (763 women [24%] vs 470 men [17%]), cardiovascular (493 women [15%] vs 407 men [15%]), kidney (444 women [14%] vs 404 men [15%]) disease, and cancer (219 women [7%] vs 321 men [12%]). In an unadjusted model, the estimated mean difference in comorbidity burden among women vs men was significantly greater in every age strata among PWH: age under 40 years, 0.33 (95% CI, 0.03-0.63); ages 40 to 49 years, 0.37 (95% CI, 0.12-0.61); ages 50 to 59 years, 0.38 (95% CI, 0.20-0.56); ages 60 to 69 years, 0.66 (95% CI, 0.42-0.90); ages 70 years and older, 0.62 (95% CI, 0.07-1.17). However, the difference between sexes varied by age strata among persons without HIV: age under 40 years, 0.52 (95% CI, 0.13 to 0.92); ages 40 to 49 years, -0.07 (95% CI, -0.45 to 0.31); ages 50 to 59 years, 0.88 (95% CI, 0.62 to 1.14); ages 60 to 69 years, 1.39 (95% CI, 1.06 to 1.72); ages 70 years and older, 0.33 (95% CI, -0.53 to 1.19) (P for interaction = .001). In the covariate-adjusted model, findings were slightly attenuated but retained statistical significance. Conclusions and Relevance: In this cross-sectional study, the overall burden of aging-related comorbidities was higher in women vs men, particularly among PWH, and the distribution of comorbidity prevalence differed by sex. Comorbidity screening and prevention strategies tailored by HIV serostatus and sex or gender may be needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e2327584
JournalJAMA network open
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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