Question

A patient is newly diagnosed with PCP and HIV. When should HAART begin? Can both be treated concomitantly?

Answer

Hello and thanks for posting.

HAART treatment should begin as soon as possible, usually within 1-2 weeks of an AIDS diagnosis, and especially if one has active PCP (PJP). In the past, we used to wait to initiate treatment for HIV until PCP treatment was completed; thinking that medications were complicated to take and caused many side effects. Both of these concepts are out of date and several large randomized clinical trials have shown that the risk of complications and death increase if one waits to initiate HIV treatment in these patients.

Both can and should be treated at the same time.

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