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HIV-Positive Men With HHV-8 Coinfection Face Increased Risk of Developing Kaposi's Sarcoma, Study Says

August 22, 2003

This article is part of The Body PRO's archive. Because it contains information that may no longer be accurate, this article should only be considered a historical document.

HIV-positive individuals who are also infected with the human herpesvirus type 8 could face an increased risk of developing Kaposi's Sarcoma, according to a study published in the Aug. 15 issue of the journal AIDS, Reuters Health reports (Reuters Health, 8/20). KS, a skin disease that has been linked to lymph-related disorders and a rare cancer, is not necessarily fatal and was especially prevalent among HIV-positive gay men during the early years of the AIDS epidemic (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 1/9/02). National Cancer Institute researchers tested a cohort of 132 HIV-positive homosexual men in New York and Washington, D.C., for HHV-8 antibodies and determined the men's CD4+ T cell counts (Engels et al., AIDS, 8/15). Researchers followed the men for several years, collecting blood samples each year. During the course of the study, 31 of the participants developed AIDS-associated KS (Reuters Health, 8/20). According the study, KS incidence was highest among men who tested positive for HHV-8 antibodies and had low CD4+ T cell counts (AIDS, 8/15). According to the researchers, HIV-positive men who tested positive for HHV-8 were nearly 12 times more likely to develop KS than men who did not test positive for HHV-8. The researchers concluded that men with HHV-8 should be treated with antiviral drugs to help prevent KS (Reuters Health, 8/20).

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Reprinted with permission from You can view the entire Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for, a free service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, by The Advisory Board Company. © 2003 by The Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.

This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.


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