While drug-drug interactions (DDIs) occur with greater frequency among older people with HIV, advanced age was not associated with increased intensity of such reactions in a recent small study, Reuters Health reports.

Publishing their findings in the journal AIDS, Felix Stader, PhD, of University Hospital Basel, and colleagues followed 21 people with HIV enrolled in the Swiss HIV Cohort study who were 55 years old or older.  

The study members were taking the blood pressure medication Norvasc (amlodipine) or the cholesterol-lowering statins Lipitor (atorvastatin) or Crestor (rosuvastatin) or a combination of those drugs. They were also receiving an HIV treatment regimen that included dolutegravir (Tivicay, also in the Triumeq, Juluca and Dovato combination pills) or boosted darunavir (Prezista, Prezcobix or Symtuza).

The study excluded those with extreme non-HIV-related health problems, including kidney disease, heart failure or cirrhosis of the liver.

All study members were white. They ranged in age between 56 and 80 years old. The study authors compared their DDIs with data from previous DDI studies of people with HIV who were for the most part younger than 50.

The investigators found that DDIs were no more severe among those older than 55 compared with younger cohorts.

This study is limited by the fact that it only analyzed the effect of pairs of drugs on DDIs, whereas many people with HIV take more than five medications at once. Additionally, the study did not have its own control group and included few people older than 65.

To read the study abstract, click here.