Five year outcomes of a cohort of HIV-infected injection drug users in a primary care practice

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Overall mortality related to HIV infection has declined with the advent of highly active anti-retroviral therapy (HAART). The purpose of this study was to examine the five-year outcomes of a cohort of 175 consecutive patients with HIV infection and injection drug use followed at a primary care practice. Patients were seen for their first visit between June 1994 and May 1998. At five years from their initial visit, 53 patients (30.3%) had died, while 47 (26.9%) were still active patients in our primary care practice. Of those who died, HIV was the cause of death in a little over half of patients (55%) followed by liver disease (15%) and drug overdose (11%). Only 80 patients ever received highly active anti-retroviral therapy (HAART) and 52 (65%) of these achieved an undetectable viral load. Patients who never received HAART had a five-year mortality of 34.8%, compared to 25.0% in patients who ever received HAART, p < .001. Our data underscore the high burden of morbidity and mortality associated with HIV infection among IDUs despite the availability of effective treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-38
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Addictive Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 14 2006


  • HIV infection
  • Liver disease
  • Primary care practice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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