Clin Exp Med. 2022 Jun 13. doi: 10.1007/s10238-022-00840-1. Online ahead of print.
To investigate the relationship between human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and the risk of mortality among coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients based on adjusted effect estimate by a quantitative meta-analysis. A random-effects model was used to estimate the pooled effect size (ES) with corresponding 95% confidence interval (CI). I2 statistic, sensitivity analysis, Begg’s test, meta-regression and subgroup analyses were also conducted. This meta-analysis presented that HIV infection was associated with a significantly higher risk of COVID-19 mortality based on 40 studies reporting risk factors-adjusted effects with 131,907,981 cases (pooled ES 1.43, 95% CI 1.25-1.63). Subgroup analyses by male proportion and setting yielded consistent results on the significant association between HIV infection and the increased risk of COVID-19 mortality. Allowing for the existence of heterogeneity, further meta-regression and subgroup analyses were conducted to seek the possible source of heterogeneity. None of factors might be possible reasons for heterogeneity in the further analyses. Sensitivity analysis indicated the robustness of this meta-analysis. The Begg’s test manifested that there was no publication bias (P = 0.2734). Our findings demonstrated that HIV infection was independently associated with a significantly increased risk of mortality in COVID-19 patients. Further well-designed studies based on prospective study estimates are warranted to confirm our findings.