|Volume 6 Issue 132 Published - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 11-May-2004 Next Update - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 12-May-2004||Editor: Susan K. Boyer, RN
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Despite 'drug cocktail', ICU admissions on the rise for patients with HIV
New York researchers have found that intensive care unit (ICU) admissions for patients with HIV have significantly increased in the last decade.
Study researchers expected ICU rates for patients with the virus to decline due to the benefits of highly active antiretroviral therapy, the HIV “drug cocktail.” In actuality, researchers found that ICU admissions for patients with HIV increased by nearly 50 percent from 1991 to 2001.
Compared to the previous decade, patients with HIV admitted to ICU in 2001 were more likely to be heterosexual, African- American, injection drug users, and admitted to the ICU due to conditions unrelated to HIV.
Researchers speculate that the significant increase in ICU admissions reflects the growing number of persons living with HIV and the emergence of non-HIV-associated conditions as causes of critical illness.
The study appears in the May issue of Chest, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.