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J Cutan Med Surg. 2002 Jan-Feb;6(1):10-5. Epub 2002 Jan 9.

Skin-related quality of life in HIV-infected patients on highly active antiretroviral therapy.

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  • 1Department of Dermatology, University of California, San Francisco, California 94143-0316, USA.



The overall health status and survival of HIV-infected patients has changed with the advent of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). With this improved survival, there is a greater urgency to study quality-of-life issues.


Our objectives were to measure skin-related quality of life in a cohort of HIV-infected patients and to determine whether the use of highly active antiretroviral therapy is associated with improved skin-related quality of life.


We assembled a retrospective cohort of patients who were seen in our HIV-Dermatology Clinic at San Francisco General Hospital in June, July, or August of 1996. Eligible subjects were contacted by mail and asked (1) to complete a questionnaire (Skindex) and (2) to have a skin exam. Information on medication use and laboratory parameters was also collected.


Of 107 eligible patients, 76 (71%) responded to the questionnaire; 60 patients were examined. Many patients had multiple skin conditions. For most diagnoses (except warts and onychomycosis), there were no consistent differences in Skindex scores of HIV-infected patients compared with scores of patients not known to be infected with HIV. Patients on HAART for longer duration had significantly lower Skindex scores (improved skin-related quality of life) compared with those on HAART for a shorter duration.


HAART is associated with improved quality of life with regard to HIV-associated skin diseases.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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