a1 University of Rochester Medical Center, Children's Hospital at Strong, 601 Elmwood Avenue, Box 667, Rochester, NY 14642, USA
The nutritional condition of children with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection continues to be a problem both in developed and developing countries. HIV-infected children grow below normal standards in both height and weight when compared with HIV-exposed non-infected children. These patterns persist over time. It is possible that acute infectious episodes and increased HIV viral burden contribute to decrements in all growth variables. Potential aetiologies for abnormal growth include inadequate dietary intake, gastrointestinal malabsorption, increased energy utilization and psycho-social problems. It is likely that all these factors contribute to the growth problems of these children to some extent. With the development of protease inhibitor anti-retroviral therapy and highly-active anti-retroviral treatment regimens, children with HIV infection in developed countries are living longer with a chronic illness. New nutritional problems have arisen with the development of the fat redistribution syndrome or lipodystrophy. Emerging problems are now being recognized, with the development of insulin resistance and truncal obesity which may potentially lead to premature cardiovascular disease.