Echocardiographic assessment of asymptomatic US Air Force members with early HIV infection

Gadiel R. Alvarado*, Courtney R. Usry, Rosco S. Gore, James A. Watts, Jason F. Okulicz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: People living with HIV (PLHIV) are at increased risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) and development of subclinical echocardiographic abnormalities. However, there is scant evidence of the echocardiographic changes that occur shortly after seroconversion. In this study we describe the echocardiographic evaluations of asymptomatic US Air Force members who were diagnosed with HIV infection and evaluated at the San Antonio Military Medical Center between September 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016. Results: Patients (n = 50) were predominantly male (96%), mostly African American (60%), with a mean age of 28 years. At HIV diagnosis, the mean viral load was 112,585 copies/mL and CD4 count was 551 cells/μL. All were found to have normal left ventricular systolic ejection fraction (EF) and global longitudinal strain (GLS) however evidence of right ventricular dilatation and left ventricular remodeling was observed in 7 (14%) and 13 (26%) patients, respectively. Subgroup analyses showed no significant differences in echocardiographic findings by HIV disease severity or CVD risk factors (p > 0.05 for all).This study suggests that untreated HIV may have a low impact on the development of echocardiographic abnormalities shortly after seroconversion. Longitudinal studies are warranted to determine the optimal CVD risk assessment strategies for PLHIV.

Original languageEnglish
Article number783
JournalBMC Research Notes
Issue number1
StatePublished - 29 Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Echocardiography
  • HIV
  • People living with HIV


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