BETHESDA, MdThe newest version of Guidelines for the Use of Antiretroviral Agents in HIV-Infected Adults and Adolescents is now available on the Internet at www.hivatis.org. The update includes recommendations about the use of Ziagen (abacavir), which can be given in combination with Retrovir (zidovudine) and Epivir (lamivudine). All three drugs are nucleoside analog reverse transcriptase inhibitors.
However, the panel that created the guidelines is concerned about the ability of this three-drug regimen to adequately suppress HIV replication in individuals with high baseline levels of plasma viral load, said co-chair John G. Bartlett, MD, of Johns Hopkins Medical Center. Thus, it recommends the Ziagen-Retrovir-Epivir combination be considered an alternative to other regimens described in the guidelines.
The guidelines are a joint effort by the US Department of Health and Human Services and the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.