Melanonychia in Patients Infected with Human Immunodeficiency Virus Original Communication


This study examined whether melanonychia was more prevalent in 1) HIV positive individuals compared to HIV negative persons, 2) HIV positives exposed to zidovudine and/or stavudine and 3) those with darker skin pigmentation. Procedures. 267 HIV positive and 273 HIV negative patients were examined for presence or absence of melanonychia and level of skin pigmentation using the Fitzgerald scale. Pharmacy records were examined for determining exposure to zidovudine or stavudine. Chi square, odds ratios and logistic regression were used to examine the study questions Main Findings. Melanonychia appeared in 49.1% of 267 HIV positive and 21.8% of 273 HIV negative subjects. Adjusting for skin pigmentation, HIV positives were 4.1 times more likely to have melanonychia than HIV negatives. Melanonychia was present in 54% of those receiving zidovudine and in 42% of those receiving stavudine (OR = 2.73, p = 0.05). In a multivariate model in HIV positives which included skin type, prescription of zidovudine and/or Stavudine, only dark skin (OR = 14.62, p < 0.001) and zidovudine (OR = 2.65, p < 0.03) were significant. Principal Conclusions. HIV infected persons are prone to melanonychia. This is more frequent in darker skinned persons and is enhanced in those exposed to zidovudine.

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P. Ehsanzadeh-Cheemeh, R. Grimes, P. Rowan, Y. Huang, E. Essien and S. Lewis, "Melanonychia in Patients Infected with Human Immunodeficiency Virus Original Communication," Advances in Infectious Diseases, Vol. 1 No. 2, 2011, pp. 15-19. doi: 10.4236/aid.2011.12002.

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The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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