AIDS Treatment News
The new Guidelines for the Use of Anti-retroviral Agents in HIV-Infected Adults and Adolescents were released February 5; they are available at many Web sites, but the official site for all the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services HIV treatment guidelines is the HIV/AIDS Treatment Information Service, www.hivatis.org
For a printed copy, you can call 800-448-0440, or mail a request to HIV/AIDS Treatment Information Service, P.O. Box 6303, Rockville, MD 20849-6303. Note: it will probably take the office 7-10 days to ship a printed copy of the guidelines -- in addition to the time required for mail delivery. Be sure to ask for the adult guidelines if that is what you want, as there are currently five different HIV guidelines available (see below).
The official Web site (www.hivatis.org) also has a separate copy of the new adult guidelines with changes highlighted in yellow, so you can see what is different from the last version.
When we checked this site in March 2001, the guidelines could either be viewed while online or printed; however, we were unable to save a copy of the file for viewing on the computer when not connected to the Internet. A dial-up (low speed) connection did work OK for viewing. When we checked, the HTML (Web) format version had a summary of the changes, which was not included in the PDF format or printed document.
What Has Changed?
The most prominent change is that the new guidelines are more conservative about when to start treatment.
"In general, treatment should be offered to individuals with fewer than 350 CD4+ T cells/mm3 or plasma HIV RNA levels exceeding 30,000 copies/mL (bDNA assay) or 55,000 copies/mL (RT-PCR assay). The strength of the recommendation to treat asymptomatic patients should be based on the willingness and readiness of the individual to begin therapy; the degree of existing immunodeficiency as determined by the CD4+ T cell count; the risk of disease progression as determined by the CD4+ T cell count and level of plasma HIV RNA; the potential benefits and risks of initiating therapy in asymptomatic individuals; and the likelihood, after counseling and education, of adherence to the prescribed treatment regimen." (From the Summary. This discussion does not apply to all patients -- see the full Summary.)
Other Guidelines Available
Besides the adult guidelines, the HIV/AIDS Treatment Information Service can send current guidelines on:
The office also has other patient education material.
Getting Your Questions Answered
The HIV/AIDS Treatment Information Service can answer individual questions, either by phone or by postal mail address above, or by email to email@example.com. It can provide information from its database, but of course cannot give medical advice.
AIDS Treatment News
Published twice monthly
Subscription and Editorial Office:
1233 Locust St., 5th floor
Philadelphia, PA 19107
useful links: www.aidsnews.org
Editor and Publisher: John S. James
Associate Editor: Tadd T. Tobias
Statement of Purpose:
AIDS Treatment News reports on experimental and standard treatments, especially those available now. We interview physicians, scientists, other health professionals, and persons with AIDS or HIV; we also collect information from meetings and conferences, medical journals, and computer databases. Long-term survivors have usually tried many different treatments, and found combinations that work for them. AIDS Treatment News does not recommend particular therapies, but seeks to increase the options available.
AIDS Treatment News is published 24 times per year, on the first and third Friday of every month, and print copies are sent by first class mail. Email is available (see below). Back issues are available at www.aidsnews.org
To subscribe, you can call 800-TREAT-1-2 or 415-255-0588:
Early email: Business, nonprofit and full-rate individual subscribers can receive an early copy by email, before the issue is printed--in addition to their regular copy, at no extra charge. It's OK to direct the email copy to someone else. Call our office to add email to your subscription.
Free email: Free delivery for individuals (delayed one week). To subscribe, send a blank email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
ISSN # 1052-4207
Copyright 2001 by John S. James.