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January 24, 2008

Factors Influencing Regimen Choice Shifting for Positive Women

Women living with HIV are increasingly basing which drugs to take as part of their antiretroviral regimens on social or demographic factors as opposed to biological ones, Aidsmap reports (, 1/23).

A report published in the January 15 edition of Clinical Infectious Diseases followed 2,700 American HIV-positive women over a ten-year span, broken up into three periods: 1996 to 2000, 2000 to 2002, and 2002 to 2005.

From 1996 to 2002, CD4 count was the major determining factor in choosing which meds to take. Women with a CD4 count higher than 200 were more than twice as likely as women whose count was lower than 200 to start a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) regimen than a protease inhibitor (PI) regimen. However, from 2002 through 2005, demographic factors appeared to play a role in initial regimen choice—black and Latina women, for example, were more likely to initiate a regimen with a PI than a (NNRTI).

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