Regular melanoma screening, as well as counseling to avoid excessive sun exposure, is recommended for patients with HIV/AIDS, according to researchers.
Despite the decrease in AIDS-defining cancers after the introduction of HAART, patients with HIV/AIDS remain at significant risk for melanoma — especially white patients with HIV/AIDS — Catherine M. Olsen, PhD, of the department of Population Health at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane, Australia, reported in PLOS One.
She and colleagues performed a systematic review and meta-analysis, pooling data using a random effects model from Medline, Embase and ISI science citation index databases on cohort studies including patients with HIV/AIDS examined for melanoma.
Of 288 studies, 21 met inclusion criteria — 13 studies included data during the post-HAART era and eight included data during the pre-HAART era.
The pooled RR for the association between HIV/AIDS and melanoma during the post-and pre-HAART eras was 1.26 (95% CI: 0.97–1.64; 95% CI, 1.11-1.43).
Among studies that adjusted for ethnicity, the pooled RR was 1.50 (95% CI: 1.12–2.01) for the post-HAART era and 1.28 for pre-HAART era (95% CI: 1.10–1.49).
“Whilst sub-group analyses revealed heterogeneity across some study characteristics, the pooled estimates in most sub-groups — most notable for studies that have appropriately adjusted for race/ethnicity and those rated of higher quality on the basis of our quality score — are indicative of a significantly increased risk,” Olsen and colleagues wrote.