HIV-associated opportunistic pneumonias

Laurence Huang, Kristina Crothers
Respirology: Official Journal of the Asian Pacific Society of Respirology 2009, 14 (4): 474-85
Among the HIV-associated pulmonary complications, opportunistic pneumonias are major causes of morbidity and mortality. The spectrum of HIV-associated opportunistic pneumonias is broad and includes bacterial, mycobacterial, fungal, viral and parasitic pneumonias. Bacterial pneumonia is the most frequent opportunistic pneumonia in the United States and Western Europe while tuberculosis is the dominant pathogen in sub-Saharan Africa. With the use of combination antiretroviral therapy and prophylaxis, the incidence of Pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP) has declined. Nevertheless, PCP continues to occur in persons who are unaware of their HIV infection, those who fail to access medical care, and those who fail to adhere to antiretroviral therapy or prophylaxis. Although pneumonias due to Cryptococcus neoformans, Histoplasma capsulatum, Coccidioides immitis, cytomegalovirus and Toxoplasma gondii are less frequent, their presence in the lung is often indicative of disseminated disease and is associated with significant mortality.

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