Biomarker testing to estimate under-reported heavy alcohol consumption by persons with HIV initiating ART in Uganda

Judith A. Hahn, Mwebesa B. Bwana, Martin A. Javors, Jeffrey N. Martin, Nneka I. Emenyonu, David R. Bangsberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Scopus citations


Alcohol affects the transmission and treatment of HIV, yet may be under-reported in resource-limited settings. We compared self-reported alcohol consumption with levels of plasma carbohydrate-deficient transferrin (%CDT), a biomarker of heavy alcohol consumption, in persons initiating antiretroviral therapy in Uganda. Almost seven percent (6.7%) of persons reporting abstaining and 10% reporting consuming 1-40 drinks in the prior month tested positive for %CDT, and actual under-report may be higher due to low sensitivity of %CDT. These results suggest likely under-report in those reporting abstaining and current drinking. Improved identification of heavy alcohol consumption is needed for research and clinical purposes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1265-1268
Number of pages4
JournalAIDS and Behavior
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2010



  • Alcohol drinking
  • Antiretroviral therapy
  • Biological markers
  • Carbohydrate-deficient transferrin
  • HIV
  • Uganda

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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