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HIV Treatment

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HIV Treatment

Currently there is no cure for HIV. However, various lines of treatments are available for HIV treatment that can enable those who are infected with HIV so stay healthy and lead a long life. Various medications are now available that can help in fighting HIV and the complications associated with HIV infection. The main aim of HIV treatment is to reduce HIV in the infected person’s body and try to keep the immune system as healthy as possible.


Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) for HIV Treatment

Antiretroviral therapy (ART) involves the use of HIV medicines for the HIV treatment. People who are on ART are prescribed a combination of HIV medicines (also known as HIV regimen) on a daily basis. Anyone who is infected with HIV is prescribed ART. ART cannot cure HIV but can help people lead a healthier life. It also reduces the risk of HIV transmission. The medicines forming part of the HIV regimen do not eliminate the HIV virus. However, they help in bringing down the total amount of virus in the blood (also known as virus load) to a very low level.

The medicines that form part of the ART act by attacking and subsequently destroying the CD4 cells of the infected person’s immune system. This loss of CD4 cells can make it difficult for the body to fight off specific infections and cancers associated with HIV. HIV medicines also help in curbing the rate of multiplication of HIV, thereby reducing the amount of HIV in a person’s body. This increases the chances of the person’s immune system to recover and become stronger.


Time to start HIV Treatment

The treatment plan of a person is designed by the doctor based on the following factors:


HIV Regimen Medicines for HIV Treatment

The medicines that form part of the HIV regimen are categorized into 6 different drug classes depending on their ability to fight HIV. A majority of the people who begin with the HIV regimen are prescribed a combination of three or more medicines from two or more different drug classes. This is also referred to as combination therapy. Some of the newer available medicines tend to package this combination of three different medicines into one pill so that the infected person is only required to take one pill in a day. Different people take different combinations of the these HIV medicines.


Risks Associated with HIV Medicines

The common risks associated with taking HIV medicines are listed below:




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