New guidelines for treating patients infected with HIV advise clinicians to postpone prescribing potent combinations of antiretroviral drugs until later in the course of the disease than previously recommended. The advice to wait—except for patients presenting during acute HIV infection—reflects an enhanced appreciation of potential toxic effects resulting from long-term use of currently available anti-HIV medications.
The guidelines, which were released last month, are the work of the Panel on Clinical Practices for the Treatment of HIV Infection, a joint effort of the Department of Health and Human Services and the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.
Stephenson J. New HIV Therapy Guidelines. JAMA. 2001;285(10):1281. doi:10.1001/jama.285.10.1281-JMN0314-2-1