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BJOG. 2009 Oct;116 Suppl 1:71-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-0528.2009.02312.x.

Preventing mother-to-child transmission of HIV.

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  • 1Perinatal HIV Research Unit, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.


HIV transmission from mother-to-child remains a major cause of infant morbidity and mortality in resource-poor settings. There is consensus that women who need antiretroviral treatment should receive this during pregnancy and beyond, and that an appropriate antiretroviral prophylactic regimen should be given to those who do not yet need ongoing therapy. Infant feeding remains a major source of infection and new antiretroviral strategies, for mothers or children, are emerging with the potential to control this. Access to HIV testing and antiretroviral treatment or prophylaxis remain very limited in low resource settings and needs to be expanded.

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