Main | Monday, March 04, 2013

MISSISSIPPI: Baby Reportedly "Cured" Of HIV By Rigorous Drug Treatment

A Mississippi infant born with HIV may have been effectively cured by her doctor's decision to treat her with large doses of antiretroviral medications.
Typically a newborn with an infected mother would be given one or two drugs as a prophylactic measure. But Dr. [Hannah] Gay said that based on her experience, she almost immediately used a three-drug regimen aimed at treatment, not prophylaxis, not even waiting for the test results confirming infection. Virus levels rapidly declined with treatment and were undetectable by the time the baby was a month old. That remained the case until the baby was 18 months old, after which the mother stopped coming to the hospital and stopped giving the drugs.When the mother and child returned five months later, Dr. Gay expected to see high viral loads in the baby. But the tests were negative.
There are presently fewer than 200 HIV-infected babies born annually in the United States, but an estimated 330,000 infected babies are born every year in the rest of the world.

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