|Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection is a global public health issue and a major problem in sub-Saharan Africa. HIV infection is now the principal cause of death in young adults in many parts of the world, and morbidity and mortality have increased several folds in sub-Saharan Africa where modern health care is unavailable to many.
HIV disease is characterized by an acquired, irreversible, profound immune-suppression that predisposes patients to multiple opportunistic infections, malignancies, and progressive dysfunction of multiple organ systems.
The exact pathogenesis of the cardiac manifestations remains unclear, but is most likely multifactorial. Almost any agent that can cause disseminated infection in patients with HIV infection may involve the myocardium, but clinical evidence of cardiac disease is usually overshadowed by manifestations in other organs, primarily the brain and lungs. Thus, the number of patients with HIV infection and cardiac involvement at necropsy greatly exceeds the number with significant cardiac disease during life. Estimates of prevalence of cardiac abnormalities in HIV infection vary widely from 28-73% (Isaac Kofi Owusu, Echocardiographic Abnormalities in Patients with HIV Infection at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Ghana).