Clinical Study in Rural Uganda Shows High Demand for Antiretroviral Drugs, University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Study

Published: Jul 25, 2012

An ongoing clinical study in rural Uganda, begun in 2011, suggests that many people infected with HIV/AIDS would take antiretroviral drugs if they were available to them—even before they developed symptoms from the disease. Led by doctors at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), the San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center (SFGH) and Makerere University School of Medicine in Kampala, Uganda, the study is the first to address such attitudes among African patients who are in the early stages of the disease and not yet sick. Historically, treatment was initiated only when someone's immune system had declined below a certain threshold, by which point they were sometimes already ill. Now, mounting evidence suggests that providing antiretroviral therapy to people long before they get sick can be a direct benefit to both them and society—by keeping the individual healthy, and by reducing the transmission of HIV within communities.

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