For the first time in five years, the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have updated the recommendations for preventing and treating AIDS-related complications in HIV-positive kids.

On the bright side, HIV treatment has greatly reduced the number of opportunistic infections and cancers among positive kids. But they do still occur, making these guidelines necessary.

The new guides say, for example, that children born with the virus can stop taking drugs for some opportunistic infections once they have responded to HIV meds. The older guidelines had recommended that kids stay on those extra drugs for life, to prevent a return of infections such as pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP). Now, an effective HIV combo can protect against those infections.

The new recommendations also update information on when to start taking meds, possible drug interactions and vaccinations. You can get a copy of the revised “Guidelines for Prevention and Treatment of Op-portunistic Infections Among HIV-Exposed and HIV-Infected Children” at, by calling 800.448.0440 or by writing to AIDSinfo, P.O. Box 6303, Rockville, MD 20849.