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recent data suggesting long term toxicity?
Apr 4, 2004

Dr. Young,

In response to your post to loyal reader I noticed that you point out something about "long term toxicities". Does this mean that you now would change your opinion in the year or two before when you stated that it should be possible for a 20 year old to hit about 70s with the hiv virus? Do you think that individuals who start treatment say at 25 now, will always have to take drugs non-stop and thus will die from these long term toxicities or will new drugs come out soon that will allow longer, cleansing drug holidays? What is your answer?

Spencer

Response from Dr. Young

Spencer- No, nothing has changed.

I actually think that we'll soon be considering alternative schedules for dosing antiretroviral medications- treatment interruptions or discontinuations- for those who reach high CD4 counts.

The background concern about the economic and possible toxicity costs of therapies, any therapies remain part of the delicate balance between risks and benefits. This is in part what drives future drug discovery-- medications that can be potent and even better tolerated or easier to take. As we engage the real hope of decades of survival, it is realistic and accurate to wonder about the long-term costs too. That's my answer. BY



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