n Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine - Guidance for antiretroviral therapy in HIV-infected infants less than 1 year of age : clinical : paediatrics




Forty per cent of HIV-infected children die before they reach their first year of life, mainly in the first 6 months. Data from the Children with HIV Early Antiretroviral Therapy (CHER) study indicate that even when infants appear well and their CD4 counts are > 25% there is a 75% increased risk of mortality when antiretroviral therapy (ART) is deferred until threshold CD4 depletion occurs or clinical criteria are met. Even after starting ART, young infants have excess mortality within the first year of life. Every effort should therefore be made to identify HIV-infected infants as early as possible so that ART can be initiated without delay.


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