Health News

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US regulators approves Gilead's Vosevi combo pill for hepatitis C retreatment

National Aids Manual (UK) - 19/07/2017
On 18 July the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Gilead Sciences' Vosevi, a new once-daily combination pill containing sofosbuvir, velpatasvir, and voxilaprevir. Vosevi was approved as "salvage therapy" for people with all hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotypes who were not previously cured with prior direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy. Vosevi

Many people living with HIV at high risk of cardiovascular disease are not on statins

National Aids Manual (UK) - 19/07/2017
Only half of HIV-positive patients at a Chicago clinic eligible for statin therapy according to the latest US guidelines are receiving this treatment, investigators report in the online edition of the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes. The researchers say their findings raise concerns about suboptimal cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention among people living with

People treated with atazanavir had lower risk of stroke and heart attack

National Aids Manual (UK) - 18/07/2017
People who started HIV treatment with a drug combination containing atazanavir (Reyataz) were significantly less likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke than people starting treatment with other regimens, a large study of US military veterans has found. The findings are published in advance online in the journal AIDS. Atazanavir is

Gay men using HIV self-tests promptly seek confirmatory testing and linkage to care, New York data suggests

National Aids Manual (UK) - 17/07/2017
Data from the partner services programme in New York City suggests that gay men who have previously used an HIV self-test tend to seek confirmatory testing without delay, according to an article published online ahead of print in Sexually Transmitted Diseases. The study also highlights socio-demographic differences between those using

Proton pump inhibitors may blunt CD4 cell gains, cause immune activation, in people with HIV

National Aids Manual (UK) - 13/07/2017
Proton pump inhibitors should be used with caution in people with HIV, US researchers say, after finding that people who received long-term treatment for gastric reflux with the drugs failed to gain CD4 cells and experienced more immune activation. The findings are published in advance online in Clinical Infectious Diseases. Proton

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease common in people living with HIV – metabolic disorders are key risk factors

National Aids Manual (UK) - 12/07/2017
Over a third of people with HIV have non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in the absence of hepatitis B or C, according to the results of a meta-analysis and systematic review published in AIDS. Metabolic disorders including high body mass index (BMI), diabetes and elevated lipids were key risk factors.

High uptake of home-based HIV testing in Zambia, but repeat visits needed to get close to universal coverage

National Aids Manual (UK) - 11/07/2017
Preliminary results from PopART, a large-scale study of a universal test and treat approach to slowing the spread of HIV in southern Africa, show that a door-to-door HIV testing programme is feasible, acceptable and effective. Testing was most likely to be accepted by women, younger people, those with symptoms and those who had not

Frailty is associated with loss of bone mineral density in middle-aged HIV-positive men and women

National Aids Manual (UK) - 10/07/2017
Frailty is associated with loss of bone mineral density (BMD) in HIV-positive people, investigators from France report in AIDS. They found that people living with HIV who were frail were more likely to show signs of bone loss in the spine and femur among women, and femoral osteoporosis in men. 

Curing hepatitis C improves diabetes control

National Aids Manual (UK) - 06/07/2017
Curing hepatitis C infection with direct-acting antiviral treatment improves diabetes control in people with more severe type 2 diabetes, a review of patients treated in the US Veterans Affairs health care system has found. The study is published in the journal Diabetes Care. Hepatitis C infection greatly increases the risk of

Viral load as low as 400 copies/ml six months after starting ART is associated with a significant ten-year mortality risk

National Aids Manual (UK) - 05/07/2017
A viral load as low as 400 copies/ml six months after starting HIV therapy is associated with a substantial ten-year mortality risk, investigators from the United States report in the online edition of AIDS. People with a viral load between 400 and 999 copies/ml had a 20% mortality risk, similar

Hepatitis A outbreak in gay and bisexual men in Europe is growing

National Aids Manual (UK) - 03/07/2017
New cases of hepatitis A cases have soared in Western Europe over the past six months as a result of an epidemic in gay and bisexual men, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) reported last week.ECDC says that almost 1500 cases of hepatitis A have been identified

San Francisco task force releases first hepatitis C estimates

National Aids Manual (UK) - 03/07/2017
End Hep C SF, a consortium of public health workers, medical providers, advocates and people living with hepatitis C, has released the first-ever estimate of the number of people thought to be living with active hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in San Francisco. The new estimate suggests that nearly 13,000 city residents are currently living

Study identifies serious gaps in treatment and care of HIV-positive adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa

National Aids Manual (UK) - 30/06/2017
Healthcare providers in sub-Saharan Africa are struggling to provide services for HIV-positive adolescents, investigators report in the Journal of the International AIDS Society. Facilities in 23 countries, which collectively provide care to over 80,000 adolescents (defined as 10-19 years) participated in the study. Four major service limitations or challenges were identified by the researchers: Mechanisms to

Why are women lost from HIV care during pregnancy? Malawi study shows social support and counselling are critical

National Aids Manual (UK) - 28/06/2017
Lack of social support after diagnosis and inadequate counselling about HIV treatment and HIV disclosure were identified as key reasons for dropping out of HIV care after starting antiretroviral treatment during pregnancy, Malawian women living with HIV told researchers in a qualitative study published this month in PLOS One. Malawi was

HIV drug resistance becoming more common in Zambian infants

National Aids Manual (UK) - 27/06/2017
The proportion of infants with HIV who had drug resistance at the time of HIV diagnosis almost doubled in Zambia between 2009 and 2014 despite the introduction of triple-drug combination treatment for pregnant women in 2014, a study published in the journal AIDS shows. Although HIV transmission from mother to child

New pangenotypic hepatitis C drug combinations recommended for approval in the European Union

National Aids Manual (UK) - 26/06/2017
Two new pangenotypic direct-acting antiviral combinations have received positive opinions from the scientific committee of the European Medicines Agency (the CHMP) and should receive European Union marketing approval in the next few months, manufacturers announced last week.Drugs submitted for approval in the European Union must be approved by the CHMP

Many Western European countries close to achieving UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets

National Aids Manual (UK) - 25/06/2017
Countries in Western and Southern Europe are well on their way to meeting the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets, according to a study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases. Using data collected to the end of 2013, a survey of eleven countries shows that an estimated 84% of people with HIV were diagnosed,

HIV has a similar impact to diabetes on heart disease risk

National Aids Manual (UK) - 21/06/2017
Living with HIV carries the same lifetime risk of cardiovascular disease as having diabetes, even after taking into account smoking, a US study has estimated. The investigators say that more research is needed to find out whether preventive treatments such as statins could reduce this risk in people who don’t

Researchers say rule out depression, anxiety, unemployment and other stresses before blaming cognitive impairment for everyday difficulties

National Aids Manual (UK) - 19/06/2017
One in five people living with HIV in a European study reported a decline in everyday functioning as a result of cognitive problems such as memory loss, difficulties in solving problems, poor concentration or reduced attention span, researchers from the CIPHER study group report in the Journal of Acquired Immune

Risk score can identify which HIV-positive people with controlled viral load are at greatest risk of neurocognitive decline

National Aids Manual (UK) - 16/06/2017
Four factors are associated with neurocognitive decline in people living with HIV with an undetectable viral load, investigators from Canada report in the online edition of the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes. The strongest individual risk factor was impaired kidney function, indicated by eGFR < 50ml/min/1.73 m2. People with