Co-morbidities in HIV

A report on the theme session on day 1 of the Conference.

How lucky are we that we have so many resources at our fingertips? That care and management of chronic health conditions has now become more about prevention of the ageing process and less about HIV and more about body systems.

The current status of non-AIDS cardiovascular comorbidities in HIV disease: Associate Professor Anthony Jaworowski, RMIT University Melbourne, Vic, Australia.

Prof Jaworowski defined it for us – “We have first world problems here!” in reflection of his very recent trip to Tanzania, where HIV is still raw and Epidemic. I also liked that he presented a picture of hope – that we are trailblazers in this space and can offer 90% Good health related quality of life, for PLHIV by developing an early care cascade to reduce inflammatory processes in body systems especially related to CVD.

“When good cholesterols turn bad.” – set the scene for action. HIV positive individuals present with MI at a younger age, suggesting earlier health assessment intervals despite age can predict subclinical disease and monitor for immune activation.

Adjunct therapies can support non-HIV related co morbidities – We know this. There is more to this. There is more to do. We live in exciting times, an annual HIV health assessment doesn’t seem enough, sitting on the doorstep of long acting therapies we can definitely offer the 4th 90% Good Health related quality of life. It’s humbling to have first world problems.

Stuart Turville and Anna Hearps

HIV and Ageing of the brain Dr Lucette Cysique, UNSW, Sydney, NSW Australia.

Dr Cysique presented a top picture of co morbid conditions to watch out for. HAND and dementia in an ageing population of PLHIV, this is something we need to pay attention to.

Mechanisms driving increased artherosclerosis risk in people living with HIV on cART Dr Anna Hearps, Burnet Institute, Vic, Australia.

Diligence, Diligence, Diligence and a bit or gore. Dr Hearps defined further that an individualised and early cascade of care and persistent viral suppression can help reduce the mechanisms of the foam cell / turncoat macrophages.

My photo of said gore harvesting of collagen from umbilicus didn’t turn out – so here is the Sydney harbour bridge.


Burden of Comorbidities Professor Andrew Carr University of NSW, Sydney, NSW, Australia


Prof Carr talked about the biggest of the big comorbidities – and put them into perspective.

I feel like I want to invest more time in harm minimisation for drugs and alcohol and fracture risk assessment than ever I have before. It seems while we are bridging the gap slowly with an expected differential of 5 years of shortened life expectancy comorbidities matter. Everyone matters.

Author bio:

I am a Sexual Health Nurse with a passionate interest in HIV and Womens' health.  My work has been in Clinical roles for QLD Health, internationally in Dublin and more recently in a Specialised GP Practice at Gladstone Road Medical Centre, GRMC. In 2004 I completed a Masters in Community Health Development - Sexual health.   Recent projects include the Government funded demonstration  QPrepd trial at GRMC & CARP trial recruitment.   I love the diversity of working alongside Specialist General Practitioners.