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When to Start ART?

START Study Confirms Benefits of Early HIV Treatment

Long-awaited results from the START study show that people with HIV who start antiretroviral therapy (ART) soon after diagnosis, while their CD4 T-cell count is still high, have a lower risk of illness and death than those who wait, according to a May 27 announcement from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

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First START Results Show Early HIV Treatments Reduces Risk of Illness and Death

Long-awaited interim findings from the START trial have shown that people with HIV who were randomly assigned to start antiretroviral therapy (ART) while their CD4 count was above 500 cells/mm3 had a 53% lower risk of AIDS-related and non-AIDS illnesses and deaths compared to those who waited until their count fell below 350 cells/mm3, according to an announcement today from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

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Increased Risk of AIDS-defining Illnesses Seen Even at CD4 Counts of 500-750

HIV positive people with CD4 T-cell counts in the 500-749 cells/mm3 range still have a higher risk of AIDS-defining illnesses -- especially cancers -- compared to those with more than 1000 cells/mm3, although the risk is quite low, according to a study published in the August 6, 2013, advance edition of Clinical Infectious Diseases. These findings offer further evidence of the benefits of prompt antiretroviral treatment.

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Short Antiretroviral Therapy Beneficial during Primary HIV Infection

A short course of combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) started during primary HIV infection is associated with CD4 T-cell gains and viral load reductions after treatment is stopped, according to a meta-analysis published in the December 6 edition of PLoS ONE.

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IAS 2013: Meta-analysis Finds Early HIV Treatment Reduces Risk of AIDS and Death

A meta-analysis of more than 30 studies found that starting antiretroviral therapy with a CD4 T-cell count above 350 cell/mm3 was associated with a lower risk of progression to AIDS or death, according to a poster presented at the 7th International AIDS Society Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention (IAS 2013) this month in Kuala Lumpur.

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