The prognosis of people with HIV is getting better. Most HIV doctors are now hopeful that the right treatment and care can mean that a person with HIV will live a more or less normal lifespan. Researchers calculated in 2008 that modern HIV treatment would mean that many people with HIV will be able to live well into their 70s. There is growing agreement that most people with HIV who get proper treatment will die with HIV not of HIV.
The following factors affect the life-expectancy of people with HIV:
- CD4 cell count. This gives a rough guide to the health of the immune system
- Viral load. The amount of HIV in the blood
- Developing serious illness because of HIV before HIV treatment is started
- Infection with hepatitis B virus or hepatitis C virus
- Injecting drug use
- Other health conditions, which aren’t related to having HIV, have an important role, particularly as people age. These include conditions such as cardiovascular disease, cancers and liver disease.
Why is prognosis improving?
The simple answer is that potent HIV treatment became available. The amount of illness and death caused by HIV has fallen dramatically since powerful combinations of anti-HIV drugs became available in 1996 and doctors have also become skilled at treating the infections patients get.
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Posted by Paisley Mizin