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treatment and life expectancy
Apr 1, 2005

If the average life expectancy of a HIV positive person is 10yrs how much longer will treatment extend the persons expected survival provided all goes well Chris SOUTH AFRICA

Response from Dr. Young

Chris- Thank you for your post.

As you may guess, such prognostication is only a crude estimate-- indeed, persons with HIV who have access to medications and trained medical care can live a very long time, perhaps to die of so-called natural causes. In this regard, here in the US and in Europe, the causes of death among HIV-infected persons have shifted from AIDS-related to non-AIDS related causes. I am hopeful that the many persons with HIV in your country will be able to achieve this too with the increasing access to antiretroviral medications.

I tell my recently diagnosed persons that if they take care of themselves and get routine medical and laboratory follow up, that they should have a near-normal life expectancy and probably outlive their doctor (since most are, saddly, younger than me).

Thanks for reading. BY



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