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Management of Pneumocystis Jirovecii pneumonia in HIV infected patients: current options, challenges and future directions

1, 2

HIV/AIDS (Auckland, N.Z.)

Dove Medical Press

HIV, Pneumocystis Jirovecii, PCP, TMP-SMZ

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      Abstract

      The discovery of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) was led by the merge of clustered cases of Pneumocystis jirovecii Pneumonia (PCP) in otherwise healthy people in the early 80’s.1,2 In the face of sophisticated treatment now available for HIV infection, life expectancy approaches normal limits. It has dramatically changed the natural course of HIV from a nearly fatal infection to a chronic disease.35 However, PCP still remains a relatively common presentation of uncontrolled HIV. Despite the knowledge and advances gained in the prevention and management of PCP infection, it continues to have high morbidity and mortality rates. Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMZ) remains as the recommended first-line treatment. Alternatives include pentamidine, dapsone plus trimethoprim, clindamycin administered with primaquine, and atovaquone. For optimal management, clinicians need to be familiar with the advantages and disadvantages of the available drugs. The parameters used to classify severity of infection are also important, as it is well known that the adjunctive use of steroids in moderate to severe cases have been shown to significantly improve outcome. Evolving management practices, such as the successful institution of early antiretroviral therapy, may further enhance overall survival rates.

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      Most cited references 94

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      Declining morbidity and mortality among patients with advanced human immunodeficiency virus infection. HIV Outpatient Study Investigators.

      National surveillance data show recent, marked reductions in morbidity and mortality associated with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). To evaluate these declines, we analyzed data on 1255 patients, each of whom had at least one CD4+ count below 100 cells per cubic millimeter, who were seen at nine clinics specializing in the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in eight U.S. cities from January 1994 through June 1997. Mortality among the patients declined from 29.4 per 100 person-years in the first quarter of 1995 to 8.8 per 100 in the second quarter of 1997. There were reductions in mortality regardless of sex, race, age, and risk factors for transmission of HIV. The incidence of any of three major opportunistic infections (Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia, Mycobacterium avium complex disease, and cytomegalovirus retinitis) declined from 21.9 per 100 person-years in 1994 to 3.7 per 100 person-years by mid-1997. In a failure-rate model, increases in the intensity of antiretroviral therapy (classified as none, monotherapy, combination therapy without a protease inhibitor, and combination therapy with a protease inhibitor) were associated with stepwise reductions in morbidity and mortality. Combination antiretroviral therapy was associated with the most benefit; the inclusion of protease inhibitors in such regimens conferred additional benefit. Patients with private insurance were more often prescribed protease inhibitors and had lower mortality rates than those insured by Medicare or Medicaid. The recent declines in morbidity and mortality due to AIDS are attributable to the use of more intensive antiretroviral therapies.
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        Life expectancy of individuals on combination antiretroviral therapy in high-income countries: a collaborative analysis of 14 cohort studies.

          (2008)
        Combination antiretroviral therapy has led to significant increases in survival and quality of life, but at a population-level the effect on life expectancy is not well understood. Our objective was to compare changes in mortality and life expectancy among HIV-positive individuals on combination antiretroviral therapy. The Antiretroviral Therapy Cohort Collaboration is a multinational collaboration of HIV cohort studies in Europe and North America. Patients were included in this analysis if they were aged 16 years or over and antiretroviral-naive when initiating combination therapy. We constructed abridged life tables to estimate life expectancies for individuals on combination antiretroviral therapy in 1996-99, 2000-02, and 2003-05, and stratified by sex, baseline CD4 cell count, and history of injecting drug use. The average number of years remaining to be lived by those treated with combination antiretroviral therapy at 20 and 35 years of age was estimated. Potential years of life lost from 20 to 64 years of age and crude mortality rates were also calculated. 18 587, 13 914, and 10 854 eligible patients initiated combination antiretroviral therapy in 1996-99, 2000-02, and 2003-05, respectively. 2056 (4.7%) deaths were observed during the study period, with crude mortality rates decreasing from 16.3 deaths per 1000 person-years in 1996-99 to 10.0 deaths per 1000 person-years in 2003-05. Potential years of life lost per 1000 person-years also decreased over the same time, from 366 to 189 years. Life expectancy at age 20 years increased from 36.1 (SE 0.6) years to 49.4 (0.5) years. Women had higher life expectancies than did men. Patients with presumed transmission via injecting drug use had lower life expectancies than did those from other transmission groups (32.6 [1.1] years vs 44.7 [0.3] years in 2003-05). Life expectancy was lower in patients with lower baseline CD4 cell counts than in those with higher baseline counts (32.4 [1.1] years for CD4 cell counts below 100 cells per muL vs 50.4 [0.4] years for counts of 200 cells per muL or more). Life expectancy in HIV-infected patients treated with combination antiretroviral therapy increased between 1996 and 2005, although there is considerable variability between subgroups of patients. The average number of years remaining to be lived at age 20 years was about two-thirds of that in the general population in these countries.
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          Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and mucosal candidiasis in previously healthy homosexual men: evidence of a new acquired cellular immunodeficiency.

          Four previously healthy homosexual men contracted Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia, extensive mucosal candidiasis, and multiple viral infections. In three of the patients these infections followed prolonged fevers of unknown origin. In all four cytomegalovirus was recovered from secretions. Kaposi's sarcoma developed in one patient eight months after he presented with esophageal candidiasis. All patients were anergic and lymphopenic; they had no lymphocyte proliferative responses to soluble antigens, and their responses to phytohemagglutinin were markedly reduced. Monoclonal-antibody analysis of peripheral-blood T-cell subpopulations revealed virtual elimination of the Leu-3 / helper/inducer subset, an increased percentage of the Leu-2 + suppressor/cytoxic subset, and an increased percentage of cells bearing the thymocyte-associated antigen T10. The inversion of the T/ helper to suppressor/cytotoxic ratio suggested that cytomegalovirus infection was an important factor in the pathogenesis of the immunodeficient state. A high level of exposure of male homosexuals to cytomegalovirus-infected secretions may account for the occurrence of this immune deficiency.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [1]Division of Infectious Diseases, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida, USA
            [2]Jackson Memorial Hospital/University of Miami Infectious Diseases Fellowship Program, Miami, Florida, USA
            Author notes
            Correspondence: Jose G Castro, Division of Infectious Diseases, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, 1120 N.W. 14th Street, Suite 860, Miami, Florida 33136, USA, Tel +1 305 243 2399, Fax +1 305 243 4728, Email jcastro2@123456med.miami.edu
            Journal
            HIV AIDS (Auckl)
            HIV/AIDS (Auckland, N.Z.)
            Dove Medical Press
            1179-1373
            2010
            18 February 2010
            : 2
            : 123-134
            3218692
            22096390
            hiv-2-123
            © 2010 Castro and Morrison-Bryant, publisher and licensee Dove Medical Press Ltd

            This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, provided the original work is properly cited.

            Categories
            Review

            Infectious disease & Microbiology

            hiv, pneumocystis jirovecii, pcp, tmp-smz

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