The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released revised guidelines on Monday for the treatment of HIV-positive adults and adolescents with the goal of making it easier for doctors and patients to choose an appropriate anti-HIV drug regimen. Previous versions of the guidelines listed anti-HIV drugs in two columns and recommended that doctors pick one drug from the first column and combine that with a choice from the second column, which typically grouped drugs together in pairs. However, with 22 single and combination medications now available, health experts believed the column format was too confusing and opted instead to list "preferred" and "alternative" drug combinations.
"These revised guidelines help simplify the process by which caregivers and patients chart a course of therapy, whether they are receiving antiretroviral treatment for the first time or are treatment-experienced and contemplating a change in drug regimen," said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
The updated guidelines can be seen online at www.aidsinfo.nih.gov.