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HIV patients sicker when seeking care than in the past
Date:10/25/2007

ve sex with mendid have a trend towards seeking care more quickly after receiving an initial diagnosis of HIV. For all men, the average length between diagnosis and presentation for care was 270 days at the beginning of the study, falling to 183 days by the end.

Womens times to seek treatment, on the other hand, stayed fairly constant. And, unfortunately, injection drug users had a dramatic increase in the time until treatment, from an average of 378 days at the beginning of the study to 630 days at the conclusion.

People in all but one of the demographic categories had a trend of increasing immunocompromise, an indicator of disease development. The level of immunocompromise was such that the person was at increased risk for a poorer clinical outcome from antiretroviral therapy than if they had presented earlier for care. Over time, patients were increasingly likely to present with AIDS or HIV symptoms. The exception was in the men who have sex with men category.

In light of what appears to have been a poor response to efforts to more rapidly diagnose and treat HIV patients in Maryland, the authors call for new strategies to provide earlier HIV testing and referral into care.


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Contact: Steve Baragona
sbaragona@idsociety.org
703-299-0412
Infectious Diseases Society of America
Source:Eurekalert

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