Navigation Links
Study Supports Popular HIV Drug Regimen
Date:5/14/2008

But other treatments work well, too, giving patients options

WEDNESDAY, May 14 (HealthDay News) -- The largest study of its kind supports the use of a popular three-drug regimen for HIV patients and suggests a cocktail of two classes of drugs is a good alternative.

But an older regimen works almost as well, said study lead author Dr. Sharon Riddler, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Pittsburgh.

"It's not like 10 years ago, where there were huge differences between regimens," Riddler said. "We're looking at relatively small differences, trying to fine-tune what actually works pretty well."

The revolution in AIDS/HIV treatment came more than a decade ago, when combinations of drugs known as "cocktails" entered the market. Patients infected with HIV or who had progressed to AIDS typically had to take numerous pills each day.

Now, pharmaceutical companies have managed to combine multiple drugs into two-pill regimens or even a single pill.

In the new study, published in the May 15 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers examined the medical records of 753 HIV-positive patients at 55 treatment centers. The patients took one of three regimens, two of which included older drugs known as nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs). Doctors consider them to be effective, but they can cause a variety of side effects.

The researchers found that the combination of a drug known as efavirenz (also known as Sustiva) plus two NRTI drugs did a better job of keeping a lid on levels of the virus in the body. Only 24 percent of those who took the regimen saw their viral load -- a reflection of the amount of HIV in their body -- return to detectable levels.

The virus gained a foothold in one-third of those who took lopinavir-ritonavir plus efavirenz -- two drugs instead of the usual three -- and in 27 percent of those who took lopinavir-ritonavir plus two NRTIs.

The researchers reported that all three regimens boosted the immune systems of the patients who took them.

The findings may bolster the use of efavirenz-based treatments in people whose immune systems are moderately to significantly suppressed, such as those who took part in the study, Riddler said. "For the most part, it's a simpler treatment for patients," she said.

Efavirenz isn't for everyone, Riddler cautioned. "A certain proportion of people won't tolerate efavirenz, and it can't be given to pregnant women," she said. For those patients, regimens that rely on so-called protease inhibitors -- like lopinavir-ritonavir -- may make sense, she said.

The study also suggests that it isn't necessary for all patients to be on NRTIs, Riddler said. "That gives us the opportunity to begin to look at other potential combinations now that we have availability of a couple of new classes of drugs."

And still another expert weighed in on the study.

Rowena Johnston, director of research at the Foundation for AIDS Research, said the study "could actually make a difference in patients' lives," because it gives them more information to help them choose among treatments.

Still, doctors and patients will continue to consider a constellation of factors when they decide which drugs are best, she said. Among other things, she said, they can look at different ways of gauging the effectiveness of the drugs plus side effects and the simplicity of regimens.

"If you put those pieces of information together, you have a better chance of finding the (best) combination for you," she said.

More information

Learn more about HIV treatments from avert.org.



SOURCES: Sharon A. Riddler, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor of medicine, University of Pittsburgh; Rowena Johnston, Ph.D., director of research, Foundation for AIDS Research, New York City; May 15, 2008, New England Journal of Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Duska Therapeutics Sponsored University of Pennsylvania Study Demonstrates ATP Improves Sperm Motility and In Vitro Fertilization in Animals
2. Study shows that prostate cancer increases the risk of bone fracture
3. Study Suggests Green Tea May Support the Medical Treatment of Stomach and Colon Cancer
4. Forty-Five Percent of U.S. Employees Have Gained Weight at Their Current Jobs, CareerBuilder.com Study Finds
5. New Study: Texas Seniors 4th Hardest-Hit from Proposed Bush Administration Medicare Cuts
6. Study Finds More Than One in Two Women are Too Embarrassed to Discuss Vaginal Discomfort With Their Doctors
7. Depression and anger can plague recent university graduates: Study
8. Rising Medical Solutions and CEO Are Featured as a Case Study in the Effective Small Business Management, Ninth Edition Textbook
9. Mayo Clinic study shows acupuncture and myofascial trigger therapy treat same pain areas
10. Study: Most female child molesters were victims of sexual abuse
11. HPV linked to better survival in tonsil, tongue cancer, U-M study finds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The Visiting Nurse Association ... Featuring a collection of specialty vendors and unique items from across the nation, this ... health and wellness services offered by the VNA. The boutique will be open ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Coveros, ... Development, has been awarded a contract by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid ... to accelerate the enterprise use of Agile methodologies in a consistent and high ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Planet Fitness, one of the largest and fastest growing franchisors ... a flagship location in Covington, LA at 401 N. U.S. Highway 190, in January ... Office Depot in the Holiday Square shopping center. Its location allows it to serve ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Information ... we intend to develop to enable prevention of a major side effect of ... loss, especially in pediatric patients. For cisplatin, hearing loss is FDA listed on-label ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... Women-owned and Grand Rapids-based workplace wellness ... in Wellness® by Best and Brightest. OnSite Wellness will be honored at the ... 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Henry Autograph Collection Hotel, located at ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... EXTON, Pa. , Oct. 10, 2017   ... leader in innovative solutions for injectable drug administration, today ... of West,s ID Adapter for improving the intradermal administration ... the Fourth Skin Vaccination Summit in May 2017 by ... Team Lead, Polio Department, World Health Organization (WHO), and ...
(Date:10/5/2017)...  In response to the nationwide opioid epidemic, ... (AAOMS) released prescribing recommendations that urge ibuprofen – ... a first-line therapy to manage a patient,s acute ... Recognizing the value and importance of the ... Acute and Postoperative Pain Management" stresses that practitioners ...
(Date:10/4/2017)...  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ... Urgent Care is helping communities across Massachusetts , ... offering no-cost* flu shots through the end of the month. ... regulations. ... a flu shot is by the end of October, according to the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: