Prevalence of HTLV-1/2 infection in pregnant women in Central and South America and the Caribbean: a systematic review and meta-analysis

by | Mar 25, 2024 | Publications

Int J Infect Dis. 2024 Mar 22:107018. doi: 10.1016/j.ijid.2024.107018. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: HTLV-1 infection is endemic in many countries of Central and South America & Caribbean (CSA&C). Neither screening nor surveillance programs exist for HTLV-1/2 infection among pregnant women in this region. Neither in Western nations with large migrant flows from HTLV-1/2 endemic regions.

METHODS: Systematic review and meta‑analysis of the prevalence of HTLV-1/2 infection among CSA&C pregnant women. We included studies searching EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, and Web-of-Science from inception to February 15th 2023. This Systematic Review followed PRISMA reporting guidelines.

RESULTS: We identified a total of 620 studies. Only 41 were finally included in the meta-analysis. Most studies (61.0%) were from Brazil and Peru (14.6%). The total number of participants was 343,707. The pooled prevalence of HTLV-1/2 infection among CSA&C pregnant women was 1.30% (95% CI: 0.96-1.69) using anti-HTLV-1/2 antibody screening tests. There was a high heterogeneity (I2=98.6%). Confirmatory tests gave an HTLV-1 infection rate of 1.02% (95% CI: 0.75-1.33).

CONCLUSION: The prevalence of HTLV-1/2 infection among CSA&C pregnant women is 1.3%, being most cases HTLV-1. This rate is greater than for other microbial agents regularly checked as part of antenatal screening (as HIV, hepatitis B or syphilis). Thus, HTLV-1/2 antenatal testing should be mandatory among CSA&C pregnant women everywhere.

PMID:38522611 | DOI:10.1016/j.ijid.2024.107018

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