Gastrointestinal Histoplasmosis: A Descriptive Review, 2001–2021

EKENG BASSEY, Asa E. Itam-Eyo, Iriagbonse Osaigbovo, Adilia Warris, Rita O. Oladele, Felix Bongomin, David Denning

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Gastrointestinal histoplasmosis (GIH) is infrequently described in people without underlying HIV infection. We aimed to compare the clinical presentation of GIH in people with and without HIV infection. We conducted a literature search of published cases of GIH from 2001–2021 and found 212 cases. Of these, 142 (67.0%) were male, and 124 (58.5%) had HIV infection. Most cases were from North America (n = 88, 41.5%) and South America (n = 79, 37.3%). Of the 212 cases, 123 (58.0%) were included in both clinical and pathological analyses. The remainder were excluded as details about clinical and pathological findings were not available. Of the 123 cases, 41 had HIV infection while 82 were without HIV infection. The diagnosis was predominantly by histopathology (n = 109, 88.6%). A significant proportion of people with HIV infection had abdominal pain as the most predominant symptom of GIH compared to those without HIV infection (65.9% versus 41.9%, p < 0.05). The colon was the most affected site with a slightly higher proportion in those with HIV infection compared with cases without HIV infection (46.3% versus 42.7%). The commonest pathologic findings were caecal and ileal ulcers. Caecal ulcers were significantly more frequent in cases with HIV infection compared to those without HIV (32.1% versus 7.1%, p < 0.05). Despite being more common in people with HIV infection, GIH also affects people without HIV infection with similar clinical presentations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number689
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2023


  • gastrointestinal
  • histoplasmosis
  • immunosuppressed


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