n Cardiovascular Journal of Africa - Cardiotropic viral infection in HIV-associated cardiomyopathy : pathogen or innocent bystander? : editorial




Clinical cardiovascular presentations associated with HIV infection include myocarditis, pericarditis, dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), arrhythmias and vascular disease. The incidence of cardiomyopathy, myocarditis and pericardial diseases correlates with the severity of HIV infection as measured by low CD4 count or high viral titre. In retrospective series and autopsy studies performed in the pre-HAART (highly active antiretroviral therapy) era, the incidence of cardiac involvement in patients with HIV ranged from 6-79%. In areas where HAART is readily available, the incidence of primary cardiomyopathy in HIV-infected patients is decreasing, but the prevalence of all cardiac disease, including atherosclerosis, in these patients is increasing due to improved survival rates.


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