The prognosis of this most potent 20th century epidemic has changed from a disease with an almost 100% fatality rate to a manageable syndrome within 20 years. This represents a change that is unprecedented in the history of medicine. Reports from around the developed world have documented the efficacy and safety of potent antiretroviral therapy and the huge impact (Fig. 22) this has had to the disease prognosis and survival. Unfortunately, as of 2006, the epidemic continues to be rampant in the poorest areas of the planet, although programs to deploy effective drugs may be under way.
The surgeon in 2006 is expected to encounter more and more survival success cases or new cases with a potential for control and long-term survival. Hence, philosophies that once discouraged certain therapies should be reevaluated. Effective treatment and collaborative work are the keys to the continuation of the survival benefits for HIV-infected persons.
CD4~adjusted Survival after Clinic Entry, by Time Period
Owen Clinic (n=5054 at risk, 1376 deaths, median follow-up 2 years)
Time after Clinic Entry (years)
- period = 2001-2003
Adjusted to CDJ=2O0
FIGURE 22 AIDS-related death proportions, UCSD Owen Clinic, by era. Source: Courtesy of Mathews WC, MD.
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