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Expert Rev Anticancer Ther. 2004 Jun;4(3):401-10.

Current treatment strategies for patients with Hodgkin's lymphoma and HIV infection.

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  • 1University Clinics Regensburg, Department of Internal Medicine I, Division of Infectious Diseases, 93042 Regensburg, Germany.


Hodgkin's lymphoma is the most common non-AIDS-defining tumor diagnosed in HIV-infected patients. Although the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) led to a decreased incidence of several malignancies among HIV-infected patients, the incidence of HIV-associated Hodgkin's lymphoma (HIV-HL) has been persistent in recent years. Its unusually aggressive tumor behavior includes a higher frequency of unfavorable histologic subtypes, high stage and extranodal involvement by the time of presentation and poor therapeutic outcome, in comparison with Hodgkin's lymphoma outside the HIV setting. Treatment of HIV-HL is challenging considering the underlying immunodeficiency caused by HIV itself and may increase the risk of opportunistic infections by inducing further immunosuppression. To address this delicate vulnerability of the HIV-infected host, tailored regimens, which are less aggressive than standard regimens for HIV-negative hosts, have been applied to achieve tumor control. The introduction of HAART has opened a new perspective in the treatment of HIV-associated malignancies. The improved control of HIV infection and the subsequently improved survival rates of HIV-infected patients has changed the goal from tumor control to cure and new treatment approaches with more potent regimens need to be evaluated to improve survival and quality of life in HIV-HL.

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