A new study from the Canadian Observational Cohort Collaboration has shown the median life expectancy for HIV positive people has risen to 65.
The study found that men fared better in life expectancy than women did, as compared to the general population where women have a greater life expectancy.
People with Aboriginal ancestry and those with a history of intravenous drug use both had lower life expectancies than other groups living with HIV.
In the case of Aboriginal people, their shorter life expectancy might be “due to competing life circumstances and social-structural factors that influence access and adherence to antiretroviral treatment (ART),” says the study, which was published in the BMC Infectious Diseases Journal.
Those who consistently used intravenous drugs had a poor life expectancy among those studied with HIV.
“In our study cohort, a significantly higher prevalence of hepatitis C infection was identified among participants with a history of IDU compared to individuals with no IDU history. Infection with hepatitis C is an important contributor to mortality and morbidity among people living with HIV, primarily due to an increased risk of liver disease.”
The study points out that while people living with HIV continue to have improving life expectancies, they still fall below that of the general population, which suggests the need for “targeted interventions” for more at-risk subgroups of HIV-positive people.