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Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2005 Jun;33(3):317-29.

Ocular association of HIV infection in the era of highly active antiretroviral therapy and the global perspective.

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Department of Ophthalmology, The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia.


Ocular involvement is a common complication of HIV infection. Since the late 1990s, widespread use of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has altered the spectrum, and reduced the incidence of ocular involvement in developed countries. The incidence of the most common ocular opportunistic infection, cytomegalovirus retinitis, has decreased tremendously. However, immune recovery uveitis secondary to HAART has emerged as a frequent visually threatening condition. Early diagnosis and treatment with periocular steroids is helpful in minimizing visual loss. Clinicians should also be aware that certain antimicrobial agents used to treat opportunistic infections in HIV-positive patients are associated with potentially serious ocular side effects. In developing countries, where most of the world's 40 million HIV-positive patients live, the spectrum and incidence of ocular involvement differ from those in developed countries. The lack of HAART availability is among the many causes of these differences, which may include nutritional factors, basic medical care availability and the levels of exposure to different infectious agents. These factors add to the already challenging task of treating ocular complications and preventing blindness in HIV-positive patients in developing countries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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