Back-calculation by birth cohort, incorporating age- specific disease progression, pre-AIDS mortality and change in European AIDS case definition. European Union Concerted Action on Multinational AIDS Scenarios.

Publié le 1 Septembre 2000
Mis à jour le 11 septembre 2019

OBJECTIVES: To adapt and improve methodology for back-calculation of AIDS in Europe and to examine the feasibility of estimating past HIV incidence by birth cohort. METHODS: Empirical Bayesian back-calculation (EBBC) used Markov disease progression models, modified to allow for three diseases added to the AIDS case definition in 1993 and for pre-AIDS mortality, and estimation by penalized maximum likelihood with a neighbour prior. EBBC by 5-year birth cohort assumed a minimum age at infection and age-dependent progression rates; three versions, with varying age effects, were investigated using AIDS cases diagnosed prior to the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapies (HAART). RESULTS: Compared with the no age-effect version, EBBC by birth cohort tended to produce flattened HIV incidence curves in country-exposure groups with < 1000 AIDS cases, reflecting effects of the neighbour prior when data become sparse. Otherwise, birth cohort analysis, with moderate effects of age on progression, gave initially increasing incidence curves and consistent patterns across countries, with the 1960-1964 cohort most affected. In the European Union, incidence is estimated to have peaked in 1983 among homosexual men and in 1988 among injecting drug users; 460000 persons were estimated to be living with HIV/AIDS at the end of 1995. CONCLUSIONS: Our improved methodology deals effectively with the change in AIDS case definition and has allowed quantitative assessments of the HIV epidemic by birth cohort using all AIDS cases diagnosed before 1996, thus providing a sound basis for public health policy at a time when estimation of more recent prevalence is compromised by the effects of HAART. (R.A.)

Auteur : Downs AM, Heisterkamp SH, Rava L, Houweling H, Jager JC, Hamers F
AIDS, 2000, vol. 14, n°. 14, p. 2179-89