People with HIV whose virus is resistant to four classes of antiretrovirals (ARVs) have a high rate of major disease diagnoses and death, Healio reports.

Publishing their findings in Open Forum Infectious Diseases, researchers studied data on 148 people with HIV participating in the observational, prospective, multicenter PRESTIGO Registry study in Italy. They had documented viral resistance to nucleoside/nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitors, non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors, protease inhibitors and integrase inhibitors.  

Thirty-eight members of the study cohort died or experienced a new major health event (62 such events all told), for a combined rate of 9.12 such outcomes per 100 cumulative years of follow-up. The new events included 12 deaths, 18 AIDS-defining events and 32 non-AIDS-defining events. Six percent of the cohort members died within four years.

After adjusting the data to account for various differences between the study members, the investigators found that people who had experienced previous clinical events, whether AIDS-defining or non-AIDS-defining, had a 2.67-fold greater chance of dying compared with people who had not experienced such events.

People living with HIV who have four-drug-class viral resistance, the study authors concluded, “have a high burden of disease with a worrying incidence of malignancies.” They strongly advised that physicians caring for this population provide them “close prevention and monitoring interventions as well as access to innovative therapeutic strategies, especially in people with a history of clinical events and low CD4+/CD8+ ratio.”

To read the Healio article, click here.

To read the study abstract, click here.