oa Southern African Journal of Anaesthesia and Analgesia - To initiate or not to initiate antiretroviral therapy in the critically ill? : SASA main conference

Volume 21, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2220-1181
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1173



The use of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in people infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has resulted in a significant increase in life expectancy since the roll-out programmes were initiated in 1996. Increased life expectancy has resulted in increasing optimism and the aggressive management of these patients. Thus, admissions to the intensive care unit (ICU) are increasing, with better outcomes than those achieved in the pre-antiretroviral therapy (ART) era. Although, the reasons for critical illness have shifted from acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)-related opportunistic infections to chronic non-AIDS co-morbidities, opportunistic infections still contribute significantly to the HIV related ICU morbidity burden in developing countries.

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