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Adherence, Initial Antiretroviral Regimens Explored in Studies

KEY POINT

Adherence to medication therapy—and not the point at which highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) is initiated—is the key determinant of mortality in patients with HIV infection, according to a recently published study. In two other trials, zidovudine (Retrovir—GlaxoSmithKline [GSK]), lamivudine (Epivir—GSK), and efavirenz (Sustiva—Bristol-Myers Squibb [BMS]) emerged as the preferred regimen for initial HAART of HIV infection.

SOURCES

Wood E et al. Effect of medication adherence on survival of HIV-infected adults who start highly active antiretroviral therapy when the CD4+ cell count is 0.200 to 0.350 x 109 cells/L. Ann Intern Med. 2003;139:810–6.

Robbins GK et al. Comparison of sequential three-drug regimens as initial therapy for HIV-1 infection. N Engl J Med. 2003;349:2293–303.

Shafer RW et al. Comparison of four-drug regimens and pairs of sequential three-drug regimens as initial therapy for HIV-1 infection. N Engl J Med. 2003;349:3404–15.

Skolnik PR. HIV therapy—what do we know, and when do we know it [editorial]? N Engl J Med. 2003;349:2351–2.