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Expert Opin Drug Metab Toxicol. 2006 Aug;2(4):533-43.

Pharmacokinetic interactions between HIV antiretroviral therapy and drugs used to treat opioid dependence.

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British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, St. Paul's Hospital, Vancouver, Canada.


Injection drug use is a common risk factor for HIV infection, and opioid use and dependence is the underlying condition that often fuels HIV risk behaviour and subsequent HIV seroconversion among injection drug users (IDUs). Treatment of opioid dependence often requires continued opioid administration in the form of substitution therapy, which means that opioid-using IDUs often continue receiving opioids even after cessation of illicit drug use. The concurrent use of both antiretrovirals and opioids in HIV-positive individuals is thus common. This review was undertaken to summarise current knowledge on the interactions between the opioids and antiretrovirals and to make recommendations on the treatment of HIV-positive opioid-dependent patients.

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