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Association between highly active antiretroviral therapy and hypertension in a large cohort of men followed from 1984 to 2003

Seaberg, Eric Ca; Muñoz, Alvaroa; Lu, Minga; Detels, Rogerb; Margolick, Joseph Bc; Riddler, Sharon Ad; Williams, Carolyn Me; Phair, John Pffor the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study

doi: 10.1097/01.aids.0000171410.76607.f8
Epidemiology and Social

Objective: To examine the impact of HIV infection and highly active antiretroviral therapy on systolic and diastolic hypertension.

Design: Cohort study with semi-annual assessment of the outcome.

Methods: We studied 5578 participants of the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study with blood pressure measurements obtained between 1984 and 2003. The primary outcomes were systolic hypertension (SH; systolic blood pressure > 140 mmHg) and diastolic hypertension (DH; diastolic blood pressure > 90 mmHg). Statistical analyses were performed using multiple logistic regression with robust variance estimation.

Results: Of the 84 813 person-visits available for analysis, 7.3 and 8.0% showed SH and DH, respectively. Controlling for age, race, body mass index, and smoking, HIV positive men not taking antiretroviral therapy were significantly less likely than HIV negative men to have SH [odds ratio (OR), 0.79; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.70–0.89], as were men taking mono/combination therapy (OR, 0.69; 95% CI, 0.59–0.80). The prevalence of SH among men taking highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) for less than 2 years was similar to that among HIV negative men (OR, 1.06; 95% CI, 0.87–1.30), but was significantly higher thereafter; for 2 to 5 years of HAART (OR, 1.51; 95% CI, 1.25–1.82) and for more than 5 years of HAART (OR, 1.70; 95% CI, 1.34–2.16). In contrast, DH was not significantly higher among men with prolonged HAART use compared to that among HIV negative controls.

Conclusions: Prolonged HAART use was significantly associated with a higher prevalence of SH. This finding suggests that individuals taking HAART may be at increased risk of developing hypertension-related conditions and underscores the importance of blood pressure monitoring among these individuals.

From the aDepartment of Epidemiology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland

bDepartment of Epidemiology, UCLA School of Public Health, Los Angeles, California

cDepartment of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland

dDepartment of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

eNational Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland

fHoward Brown Health Center and Department of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois, USA.

*The MACS website located at

Received 20 September, 2004

Revised 15 February, 2005

Accepted 22 February, 2005

Correspondence to Eric C. Seaberg, PhD, MPH, Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 615 North Wolfe Street, Room E-7634, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA. E-mail:

© 2005 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.