STUDY: HIV+ People Are Living Longer, But What’s Their Quality Of Life?

Researchers at the University of Bristol’s School of Social and Community Medicine found that early treatments and modern medicines developed over the last decade have increased life expectancy of HIV-positive people by about 15 years. But what about the quality of life during these years?

Here’s a tiny bit more about the study:

A team led by Dr Margaret May looked at the average 20-year-old starting treatment with anti-retroviral drugs between 1996-1999 and 2006-2008.

Between 1996 and 1999, the average life expectancy was 30 years. Ten years later, this had risen to almost 46 years.
The research found substantial differences in life expectancy for men and women.

Between 1996 and 2008, men had a 40-year life expectancy, while women’s life expectancy was 50 years.

Sir Nick Partridge, chief executive of the Terrence Higgins Trust HIV advocacy group said, “Of course, it’s not just length of life that’s important, but quality of life too.”

Indeed. Anti-retrovirals can cause diarrhea, liver problems, fatigue, and crazy LSD dreams because of their involvement with the central nervous system.

So while it’s great to hear that people with HIV live longer lives these days, we still need some awareness on how those lives look and feel. It won’t only help encourage HIV prevention but also prepare HIV-positive people for the reality of the years ahead.

Image via dsb nola