Combination antiretrovirals may be heart-protective in HIV children

Markus MacGill


In a study that set out to determine the cardiac effects on HIV-infected children of prolonged exposure to highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), the drugs have been found to improve heart function.

In a study published online today by the JAMA Pediatrics journal, HIV-infected children had been given at least three different antiretrovirals and their level of heart disease and damage was compared with that seen in infected children who had received no therapy.

Also included in the study were children from 1990s research, when HIV-infected children did not receive the highly active drugs. The study looked at almost 600 subjects in total.

“Long-term highly active HIV antiretroviral therapy appears to be cardioprotective for HIV-infected children and adolescents.”

Steven Lipshultz, Paige Williams, James Wilkinson, et al, Pediatric HIV/AIDS Cohort Study (PHACS).

Cardiac damage by HIV infection means that children are routinely monitored by ultrasound (echocardiogram). Before this study, the heart effect of highly active antiretroviral therapy was unknown.



Related news:

HIV Drugs May Help Protect Young Patients’ Hearts (WebMD)

HIV Drug Cocktail Protect Hearts of Children With Virus (Bloomberg)

Reference links:

JAMA Pediatrics study

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