Background: Life expectancy of people with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is now estimated to approach that of the general population in some successfully treated subgroups. However, to attain these life expectancies, viral suppression must be maintained for decades. Methods: We studied the rate of triple-class virologic failure (TCVF) in patients within the Collaboration of Observational HIV Epidemiological Research Europe (COHERE) who started antiretroviral therapy (ART) that included a nonnucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) or a ritonavir-boosted protease inhibitor (PI/r) from 1998 onwards. We also focused on TCVF in patients who started a PI/r-containing regimen after a firstline NNRTI-containing regimen failed. Results: Of 45 937 patients followed up for a median (interquartile range) of 3.0 (1.5-5.0) years, 980 developed TCVF (2.1%). By 5 and 9 years after starting ART, an estimated 3.4% (95% confidence interval [CI], 3.1%-3.6%) and 8.6% (95% CI, 7.5%-9.8%) of patients, respectively, had developed TCVF. The incidence of TCVF rose during the first 3 to 4 years on ART but plateaued thereafter. There was no significant difference in the risk of TCVF according to whether the initial regimen was NNRTI or PI/r based (P=.11). By 5 years after starting a PI/r regimen as second-line therapy, 46% of patients had developed TCVF. Conclusions: The rate of virologic failure of the 3 original drug classes is low, but not negligible, and does not appear to diminish over time from starting ART. If this trend continues, many patients are likely to need newer drugs to maintain viral suppression. The rate of TCVF from the start of a PI/r regimen after NNRTI failure provides a comparator for studies of response to secondline regimens in resource-limited settings.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine