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Author Notes:

Corresponding author: Bernadette Ng’eno, 1 Corporate Blvd Ne, MS E-04, Atlanta, GA 30329, USA. Tel: 770-488-5227. (uyt0@cdc.gov)

TC, SM and JS conceptualized the article. JS and TC prepared the initial draft, with contributions and revisions made by SM, BN and LB. All authors have read and approved the final version.

The authors declare that no competing interests exist.

The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Research Funding:

This publication was supported by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).


  • Science & Technology
  • Life Sciences & Biomedicine
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pregnant adolescents
  • HIV
  • antenatal care
  • infant outcomes
  • PMTCT cascade
  • retention

Pregnant adolescents living with HIV: what we know, what we need to know, where we need to go


Journal Title:

Journal of the International AIDS Society


Volume 20, Number 1


, Pages 1-4

Type of Work:

Article | Final Publisher PDF


INTRODUCTION: HIV-infected pregnant and breastfeeding adolescents are a particularly vulnerable group that require special attention and enhanced support to achieve optimal maternal and infant outcomes. The objective of this paper is to review published evidence about antenatal care (ANC) service delivery and outcomes for HIV-infected pregnant adolescents in low-income country settings, identify gaps in knowledge and programme services and highlight the way forward to improve clinical outcomes of this vulnerable group. DISCUSSION: Emerging data from programmes in sub-Saharan Africa highlight that HIV-infected pregnant adolescents have poorer prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission (PMTCT) service outcomes, including lower PMTCT service uptake, compared to HIV-infected pregnant adults. In addition, the limited evidence available suggests that there may be higher rates of mother-to-child HIV transmission among infants of HIV-infected pregnant adolescents. CONCLUSIONS: While the reasons for the inferior outcomes among adolescents in ANC need to be further explored and addressed, there is sufficient evidence that immediate operational changes are needed to address the unique needs of this population. Such changes could include integration of adolescent-friendly services into PMTCT settings or targeting HIV-infected pregnant adolescents with enhanced retention and follow-up activities.

Copyright information:

© 2017 Callahan T et al

This is an Open Access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/).

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