Research news: November 2012
A cohort study from South Africa has confirmed that men being treated for HIV have a significantly higher death rate than similarly treated women. The authors couldn’t fully explain this mortality gap, which was not the result of men being older, sicker, less responsive to antiretroviral drugs, or more like to disappear from follow-up. In fully adjusted analyses, men were still 31% more likely to die than women during their first three years of treatment (hazard ratio 1.31, 95% CI 1.22 to 1.41). The authors studied 46 201 adults with HIV who started treatment with antiretroviral drugs between 2002 and 2009. About two thirds of the participants were female (30 093; 65%).
This isn’t the first study to report worse outcomes for African men with HIV, but it is one of the first to look carefully for an explanation. The authors didn’t find one, but they did notice that the