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B. HIV Patients at High Risk for Cardiovascular Disease

Narrator: This is Science Today. With the advent of antiretroviral medication, HIV patients are living longer, but they are facing another health problem: an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Priscilla Hsue of the University of California , San Francisco led a study which found that HIV-positive patients were more likely to have carotid artery intima-media thickness, or IMT a potent predictor of heart attack and stroke.

Hsue: We found, we had age matched our HIV patients and our HIV negative control patients and right off the bat, we found that our HIV patients had a higher baseline carotid IMT thickness than the HIV negative controls. And we also found a higher rate of risk factors within the HIV patients. They seem to have higher rates of cigarette smoking, higher rates of hypertension as well. And because of that, I think that physicians need to be very aware of HIV patient's risk factors and they need to kind of aggressively address risk factors.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.