Ageing with HIV: medication use and risk for potential drug-drug interactions

Catia Marzolini, David Back, Rainer Weber, Hansjakob Furrer, Matthias Cavassini, Alexandra Calmy, Pietro Vernazza, Enos Bernasconi, Saye Khoo, Manuel Battegay, Luigia Elzi
Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 2011, 66 (9): 2107-11

OBJECTIVES: To compare the use of co-medication, the potential drug-drug interactions (PDDIs) and the effect on antiretroviral therapy (ART) tolerability and efficacy in HIV-infected individuals according to age, ≥ 50 years or <50 years.

METHODS: All ART-treated participants were prospectively included once during a follow-up visit of the Swiss HIV Cohort Study. Information on any current medication was obtained by participant self-report and medical prescription history. The complete treatment was subsequently screened for PDDIs using a customized version of the Liverpool drug interaction database.

RESULTS: Drug prescriptions were analysed for 1497 HIV-infected individuals: 477 age ≥ 50 and 1020 age <50. Older patients were more likely to receive one or more co-medications compared with younger patients (82% versus 61%; P < 0.001) and thus had more frequent PDDIs (51% versus 35%; P < 0.001). Furthermore, older patients tended to use a higher number of co-medications and certain therapeutic drug classes more often, such as cardiovascular drugs (53% versus 19%; P < 0.001), gastrointestinal medications (10% versus 6%; P = 0.004) and hormonal agents (6% versus 3%; P = 0.04). PDDIs with ART occurred mainly with cardiovascular drugs (27%), CNS agents (22%) and methadone (6%) in older patients and with CNS agents (27%), methadone (15%) and cardiovascular drugs (11%) in younger patients. The response to ART did not differ between the two groups.

CONCLUSIONS: The risk for PDDIs with ART increased in older patients who take more drugs than their younger HIV-infected counterparts. However, medication use in older and younger patients did not differ in terms of effect on antiretroviral tolerability and response.

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