Just How Adherent Are Most HIVers?


May 12 2006 12:00 AM ET

The mantra of HIV treatment is that strictly adhering to your antiretroviral regimen is vital and that taking at least 95% of your meds on time as prescribed could be the key to avoiding treatment failure. But just how many HIVers are maintaining perfect adherence? Fewer than half, researchers reported in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes. A study of a large cohort of Swiss HIV patients showed that nearly one third reported missing at least one dose of medicine in the previous month, 15% missed at least two doses, and 7% say they were less than 95% adherent.

People most likely to miss doses included HIVers who were young, lived alone, had been on a previous antiretroviral regimen or were taking a boosted protease inhibitor. Adherence was best among HIVers who had experienced CD4 rebounds of 50 cells or greater or who had suppressed viral loads to undetectable levels in the prior six months.

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