Report from Geneva: women and HIV.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The 12th World AIDS Conference in Geneva received reports on the efficacy of AZT in reducing HIV transmission between mother and infant, as well as other risk factors for transmission. Two studies revealed that a short-course of AZT treatment can reduce perinatal transmission. Two other large studies showed that incorporation of prenatal AZT into clinical practice has dramatic benefits in reducing HIV transmission. Most publicized was the data from several studies which show that a Cesarean section performed before the onset of labor or rupture of membranes, further reduces the risk of perinatal transmission. Researchers also provided information indicating that breastfeeding should be avoided when the mother is HIV-infected, that the presence of HIV may reduce a pregnant woman's ability to control the perinatal transmission of malaria, and that bacterial vaginosis was associated with HIV seroconversion during pregnancy and increased perinatal transmission. Finally, Geneva produced several studies reporting gender differences in viral load that have implications for when to begin antiretroviral therapy, that the genital tract represents a distinct reservoir of HIV infection, and that HIV-infected women were showing increased rates of lower genital tract neoplasia, which correlated with evolving immunosuppression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3, 12-13
JournalThe Hopkins HIV report : a bimonthly newsletter for healthcare providers / Johns Hopkins University AIDS Service
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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