Feb 26, 2002
Dear Dr Young I have been reading this forum and noticed that many hiv+ people worry about their potential life span. I also see that for an average person the time for hiv disease to progress from seroconversion to symtomatic is about 5 yrs and even at this stage we can still stop hiv with current available drugs. You also said many people can succesfully control the virus for 5 years or more. The problem with today drugs is the adverse intoxity. My idea is why dont we start treatment as soon as posible for as long as a person can tolerate before troubles then stop all drugs for 1 year to give the body a chance to clean itself, without control hiv would damage the immun system during this period but there is no reson that the body can not contain it for the time being . If this cycle can be repeated 4-5 times before the patient reaches symtomatic stage then we can stall the disease for a long time ,perhaps 30 or more yrs with current drugs.This time gain is more than sufficient for most hiv+ people to live out their normal life span. What do you think about this Doc? Thanks for listening.
Response from Dr. Young
Excellent concept; indeed this is the topic of several large, prospective clinical trials. The questions that are unanswered with this approach are when are the best times to start and resume therapy, which drugs to use, and how to best avoid toxicity and the emergence of drug resistance. BY
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