, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp 271-293
Date: 29 Jun 2014

HIV Treatment

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Opinion Statement

How would we treat this disease?

The outlook for people living with HIV (PLWH) has been transformed by the availability of effective antiretroviral therapy. Vast improvements in drug efficacy, tolerability, safety and convenience have been achieved over recent years and in the UK, patients on suppressive treatment with immune reconstitution have the same life expectancy as the general population. A number of well-researched guidelines for initial HIV therapy form the foundation for HIV treatment decisions. Across the board recommended first-line therapy consists of three agents from two drug classes—this basic ‘recipe’ has remained unchanged for more than 15 years but remains unbeaten by any alternative strategy also. HIV care is complex; PLWH are at a higher risk of several age-related co-morbidities, anxiety, depression, and stigma and discrimination. Side effects still occur, drug interactions range from troublesome to life threatening and ensuring that HIV services meet these needs is crucial.