Sombo MT, Mussa R, Bumoko G, Nsiala M, Mananga GL, Aloni M, Tshala D.

Background and objectives. Neuropsychiatric manifestations are common in HIV/AIDS. However, prevalence and factors associated among HIV-infected children in developing countries are sparse. The objectives of this study were to identify and describe neurological and psychiatric disorders.

Methods. A cross-sectional study was conducted in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of Congo. Two consultations with interval of one week were organized for each selected child. The parents, the legal guardians and the social workers were interviewed based on a standardized questionnaire.

Results. Fifty-one children (25 males and 26 females) were evaluated during the period study. Out of 51 patients, 58.8% were children ≥ 6 years. In this survey, 63% were orphans at least one parent. Regarding their school attendance, 64.7% of these children had reached school age. Microcephaly were reported in 39.2% HIV-infected children. Age ≥ 6 years (p=0.04), medical history of malnutrition (p=0.02), malnutrition of weight for height (p=0.004) and the clinical stage 3 + 4 (p=0.03) were the independent predictors of motor disorders associated with instinctual disorders. Age ≥ 6 years, the presence of malnutrition of weight for height and the personal social situation of the child were the independent predictors of motor disorders associated with enuresis (p < 0.05).

Conclusion. Neurological and psychiatric manifestations are prevalents in HIV-infected children living in Kinshasa. This situation underlines the need for psychiatric interventions for all children with HIV/AIDS to identify patients with the risk of these complications and provide early management.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS; children; microcephaly; neurologic disorders; psychiatric disorders; enuresis; Kinshasa; the Democratic Republic of Congo; Africa

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