Summary: Insulin resistance (IR) in the context of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) is becoming more common in HIV-infected patients. Patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection have an increased risk of IR and type 2 diabetes mellitus. A cross-sectional study was performed to investigate whether chronic HCV infection constitutes a risk factor for IR in HIV-HCV-coinfected patients undergoing HAART. Inclusion criteria were positive HCV viremia and a sustained increase of alanine aminotransferase of at least twice the normal value. A total of 29 HIV-HCV patients, 76 HIV patients, and 121 HCV controls were tested for IR and body mass index (BMI). IR was measured using the homeostasis model assessment. In HIV-HCV and HIV patients, fat redistribution and lipid profile were assessed. There was no significant difference in age, CD4 cell count, HIV viral load, or duration of HAART between the HIV-HCV and HIV groups. HIV-HCV patients and HCV controls had a significant increase in IR when compared with HIV patients (0.25 +/- 0.28 and 0.21 +/- 0.34 versus 0.04 +/- 0.37; p = .01 and p = .003, respectively). Lipoatrophy was observed more frequently in HIV-HCV patients in comparison with HIV patients (41% versus 14%; p = .003). In HIV-HCV patients, total cholesterol and triglyceride levels were significantly lower than in HIV patients. In multivariate analysis, IR, BMI, triglyceride levels, and peripheral fat wasting were the independent variables associated with HCV infection. Our findings suggest that chronic HCV infection is a significant factor associated with the development of metabolic abnormalities and with modifications in body composition in HIV patients receiving antiretroviral treatment.
(C) 2001 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.