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July 19, 2011

IAS 2011: Antiretroviral drugs and risk of cardiovascular disease

Antiretroviral drugs and risk of cardiovascular disease

A systematic review and meta-analysis from Stanford University (United States) looked at studies that described the association between antiretroviral drugs and cardiovascular events, including myocardial infarction (MI) and stroke. The authors assessed study quality based on exposure, outcome, patient selection criteria, and use of adjusted analyses. And conducted separate analyses by antiretroviral exposure as well as by outcome.

The conclusions are anything but definitive. According to the authors, based on 9 poor quality studies and 18 fair studies, the evidence suggests abacavir and protease inhibitors increase the risk of cardiovascular events modestly.

Here is their key conclusion: Note that “The importance of the increase in relative risk will depend on absolute risk of cardiovascular events and will vary among populations and patients.”

Bavinger J, Desai M, Olkin I, et al. CDB462. Antiretroviral drugs and risk of cardiovascular disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis [Abstract]. July 19, 2011 at the 6th IAS Conference on Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention, Rome, Italy. Abstract CDB462.

Source: Reporting for PRN News from Rome, Italy: Bill Valenti, MD