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Opportunistic ocular infections in the setting of HIV

Laovirojjanakul, Wipada; Thanathanee, Onsiri

Current Opinion in Ophthalmology: November 2018 - Volume 29 - Issue 6 - p 558–565
doi: 10.1097/ICU.0000000000000531

Purpose of review The aim of this review is to highlight recent changes in opportunistic ocular infections (OOIs) in the era of modern combination antiretroviral therapy (cART), in the setting of HIV-infected patients.

Recent findings Improvements in modern cART has led to a progressive decline in the incidence of OOIs and mortality among patients with AIDS. Not only has there been a decreasing incidence of cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis, but there also has been a decline in progression of such retinitis when it does occur in AIDS patients, since the introduction of cART. Nevertheless, CMV retinitis remains the major cause of vision loss in AIDS patients. Although the incidence of CMV retinitis has declined overall, the incidence of ocular syphilis has increased during the cART era. Moreover, the impact of having HIV plays a role with respect to multidrug-resistant (MDR) tuberculosis and has resulted in a high prevalence of presumed ocular tuberculosis in HIV/MDR-TB co-infected patients. Although immune reconstitution uveitis (IRU) has been an important cause of visual deficits in developed countries, OOIs remain an important cause of blindness in the developing world.

Summary Reconstituting the immune system with effective cART while increasing accessibility of screening examinations is key to the success of blindness prevent in HIV-infected individuals, particularly in developing countries.

Department of Ophthalmology, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Thailand

Correspondence to Wipada Laovirojjanakul, MD, KKU Eye Center, Department of Ophthalmology, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen 40002, Thailand. Tel: +66 43 363010; fax: +66 43 348383; e-mail:

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