Early Treatment Can Keep HIV in Check

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

HIV Treatment

In what could provide vital clues to the medical world for controlling AIDS, Dr Asier Saez-Cirion of the Pasteur Institute in Paris has presented an interesting case wherein an 18-year-old teen born with HIV has infection under control. The French origin patient stopped taking medications since the age of 6.

The case was presented at the International AIDS Society conference in Vancouver British Columbia. This unprecedented remission, doctors state is the result of some sort of natural resistance to HIV which hasn’t yet been discovered. It has also established that early, aggressive treatment can keep the virus in check and in some cases allow people to control it without lifelong drugs. This is not the first case in which an HIV infected person has made it without medication. Previously, a dozen adults have had remissions for about 10 years, however, this is the first case in which a child affected with HIV from birth has made it without medicine for 12 years. A couple of years ago, a similar case of a girl appeared who was able to keep HIV in check for 27 months without medicine. However, the virus rebounded after that.

In the case of the French teen, the patient was administered HIV drugs until she turned 6, but then doctors lost contact with her and upon her return a year later, doctors were informed that she was not under medication. The doctors then examined her and did not find traces of HIV and decided not to resume the treatment. The virus however, rebounded when the girl was 11 but then subsided automatically without medicines. This makes doctors sceptical over whether the remission will last forever. The girl still has traces of HIV which are only detectable by sensitive tests. 

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