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Persons with HIV (PWH) hospitalized with COVID-19 have similar outcomes to demographically-matched patients without HIV, according to a study published online June 28 in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

Keith Sigel, M.D., Ph.D., from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, and colleagues compared outcomes for PWH and COVID-19 with a matched comparison group. Data were included for 88 PWH hospitalized with COVID-19 between March 12 and April 23, 2020, and 405 HIV-uninfected matched comparators (one PWH was matched with up to five patients by age, sex, race/ethnicity, and calendar week of infection).

The researchers found that the proportions of HIV virology control on antiretroviral therapy were high for PWH hospitalized with COVID-19. Greater proportions of smoking and comorbid illness were seen for PWH than demographically-similar uninfected comparators. On admission by HIV status, there was no difference noted in COVID-19 severity. Hospitalized PWH frequently had poor outcomes, but the proportions were similar to those of matched comparators; 18 and 21 percent of PWH required mechanical ventilation and died during follow-up, compared with 23 and 20 percent, respectively. Over time, the cumulative incidence of death was similar by HIV status.

“If confirmed, investigation of specific factors contributing to similar outcomes in this large group of patients with immune disturbance may provide greater insight into the pathogenesis of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2,” the authors write.

Two authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.


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