HIV is a lifelong, life-altering condition that requires ongoing treatment and monitoring. One of the common treatments for HIV is antiretroviral therapy (ART), which consists of a combination of four or more drugs. ART helps patients manage their HIV by effectively reducing the amount of virus in their body and suppressing its replication. Although this treatment is effective and lifesaving for many, it can lead to long-term side effects on certain organs, such as the kidneys.
Kidney toxicity has long-term effects
Kidney toxicity is one of the long-term effects of some HIV medicines. Protease inhibitors, which are a type of ART drug, can cause elevations in the levels of creatinine, a waste product that is normally removed from the body by the kidneys. If these levels are too high, it can be an indication of reduced kidney function due to the inability to excrete creatinine. These high levels of creatinine can lead to an increased risk of kidney stones and other problems.
Increase in the level of other modulatory factors
In addition, HIV-related kidney complications may be made worse by ART treatment. HIV itself can lead to kidney inflammation, a condition known as HIV proteinuria, which can also lead to kidney damage if left untreated. ART drugs may further increase the levels of inflammation and damage in the kidneys, leading to further kidney problems.
Reduction with deterioration in kidney function over time
Additional long-term effects of ART drugs on the kidneys include a higher risk of developing chronic kidney disease (CKD). This is often seen in older adults who have been taking ART drugs for extended periods of time, as the drugs reduce their kidney function over time. HIV proteins can also accumulate in the kidneys due to reduced kidney function. This can lead to a buildup of proteins in the urine, which can further cause inflammation and injury to the kidneys.
To prevent and protect the vital function of the kidneys
Patients taking ART drugs for HIV should be aware of the potential long-term effects on their kidneys and should discuss this with their doctor. Regular blood tests should be performed to check for increased creatinine levels, indicating reduced kidney function. Kidney function should also be assessed on a regular basis to monitor for further issues. Regular exercise and following a healthy diet may help to protect against kidney damage from ART drugs. In addition, patients should contact their doctor if they experience any signs or symptoms of kidney damage including fatigue, proteinuria, edema, confusion, or decreased urination.
Medicine – Dolutegravir
Dolutegravir is an antiviral medicine commonly used to treat HIV or human immunodeficiency virus. It works by blocking reverse transcriptase, an enzyme needed for the virus to replicate and grow. Developed by Gilead Sciences in 2013, dolutegravir 50mg has become a highly successful first-line therapy for HIV treatment due to the drug’s low rate of side effects and its ability to reduce viral loads quickly.
The drug also offers better outcomes than most other antiviral drugs, with clinical trials demonstrating significant decreases in mortality and resistance rates among patients taking dolutegravir. Additionally, it is usually prescribed as part of combination therapy with other anti-HIV drugs as this increases efficacy and prevents drug resistance. All in all, dolutegravir is a reliable and effective treatment option for those suffering from HIV and related illnesses.
In conclusion, HIV drugs can lead to long-term kidney damage and complications. Patients taking ART should discuss the potential risks with their doctor and get regular blood tests and kidney assessments. Following a healthy lifestyle and seeking medical advice as soon as possible if any symptoms of kidney damage arise can help to reduce the risk of long-term complications.