New York Times’ Health Section Examines HIV/AIDS Issues
The New York Times Health section today features three articles related to HIV/AIDS issues. Synopses of the articles appear below:
- " Beyond Temporary 'Miracles'": During the XIV International AIDS Conference held last week in Barcelona, Spain, AIDS experts presented two differing views on antiretroviral drugs -- one that touted their benefits and another that highlighted the adverse effects that the medicines can elicit in users. Antiretroviral drugs are sometimes considered "magic bullets" because they can help patients recover from illness, regain their appetite and sometimes return to work. However, the drugs have also been linked to several health problems, including heart disease, liver disease, diabetes, lipodystrophy and nausea. The full article is available online (Zuger, New York Times, 7/16).
- "The Urgent Search for an AIDS Plan": The article features commentary on current HIV/AIDS issues by a number of physicians, researchers and health officials, including UNAIDS Executive Director Peter Piot; Dr. Jordi Casabona, a co-president of the XIV International AIDS Conference; Dr. Julio Frenk, the health minister of Mexico; and Dr. Lawrence Corey, a vaccine researcher at the University of Washington. The experts weighed in on such issues as funding for global HIV/AIDS programs, the importance of HIV prevention and treatment programs, drug-resistant strains of HIV and the need for HIV prevention, testing and treatment programs in developing nations. The full article is available online (Altman, New York Times, 7/16).
- " Improved Drug Regimens Help Patients Take Their Medicine": The article focuses on the continual challenge to create simple and effective drug regimens in order to maximize patient adherence. Patients often do not stick with their prescribed treatment regimens because of the number of different pills involved, the side effects caused by the drugs or because the medicine is difficult to administer, as is the case with injection drugs. "If a novel drug formulation offers less frequent dosing or fewer side effects, these improvements may be enormously important to patients, possibly making a difference in determining whether or not a patient takes the medicine," the Times reports. The full article is available online (Shaywitz/Ausiello, New York Times, 7/16).