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Thrombocytopenia, Liquor Use and Marijuana are Associated with Noninvasive Markers of Liver Fibrosis in People Living with HIV | OMICS International | Abstract
ISSN: 2329-6488

Journal of Alcoholism & Drug Dependence
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Research Article

Thrombocytopenia, Liquor Use and Marijuana are Associated with Noninvasive Markers of Liver Fibrosis in People Living with HIV

Maria José Míguez-Burbano1*, Diego Bueno1, Allan Rodriguez2, Mayra E Vargas1, Erika Richardson2 and John Lewis3

1School of Integrated Science and Humanity, Florida International University, Miami, FL, USA

2Department of Medicine, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL, USA

3Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Maria José Miguez-Burbano
School of Integrated Science and Humanity
Florida International University, Miami, FL, USA
Tel: 561-422-3610
Fax: 305-348-4289
E-mail: [email protected]

Received date: April 24, 2014; Accepted date: July 25, 2014; Published date: July 29, 2014

Citation: Míguez-Burbano MJ, Bueno D, Rodriguez A, Vargas ME, Richardson E, et al. (2014) Thrombocytopenia, Liquor Use and Marijuana are Associated with Non-invasive Markers of Liver Fibrosis in People Living with HIV. J Alcohol Drug Depend 2:168. doi:10.4172/2329-6488.1000168

Copyright: © 2014 Míguez-Burbano MJ, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Objective and aims: Liver disease is currently one of the leading causes of death among people living with HIV. Although platelets alterations are well recognized in the course of liver disease, the impact of thrombocytopenia (TCP: platelet counts <150,000 per microliter), which is highly prevalent among Hazardous Alcohol Users (HAU), is unclear. This lack of information limits the possibility to identify those at risk and to create targeted interventions.

Methods: In this study, a total of 400 people living with HIV underwent laboratory assessments to determine if in addition to alcohol, TCP or its related factors (i.e., serotonin) were associated with non-invasive markers of liver fibrosis. The FIB-4 and the APRI scores were calculated using the Sterling’s and the Wai’s formulas, respectively.

Results: Liver fibrosis was present in almost half of the study population (47%). As expected, APRI values of Hepatitis C co-infected subjects were higher than in HIV mono-infected patients (0.96 ± 0.18 vs. 0.5 ± 0.45, p=0.01). Notably, the risk was higher among marijuana users (OR= 9 95% CI 1.3-9.5, p=0.02). The risk of moderate fibrosis was also higher in the HAU (OR = 1.3; 95% CI, 1-2.5, p=0.04) when compared to non-HAU. Additional analyses indicated that consumption of liquor even 1-2 drinks per day, and high daily intakes of beer or wine (> 3 drinks per day) increases the risk of liver fibrosis. Thrombocytopenia, which is still prevalent (HAU=15% versus Hep C=22%) significantly increased the odds of moderate fibrosis (OR = 9; 95% CI, 3.6-23; p=0.0001). The odds of having severe fibrosis were 52% higher in the TCP group (95% CI, 13-97; p=0.0000). Serotonin, which is stored in the platelets, was also reduced among subjects with liver fibrosis levels (55.7 ± 6.7 vs. 87.3 ± 7.8 ng/mL, p=0.003). Multivariate analysis identified gender, hepatitis C, liquor use, TCP, marijuana and serotonin alterations as risk factors associated with liver fibrosis.

Conclusion: Liver fibrosis is a condition that was associated with modifiable risk factors such as HAU, marijuana, TCP and viral hepatitis C. These results indicated that health care providers must be attentive for signs of these conditions to avert the risk of this terminal liver disease. From the clinical perspectives, analyses suggest that platelet-based interventions and serotonin agonist could be potential therapeutic targets.


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