HIV Virus Returns In Baby Thought To Be Cured
A toddler thought to have been cured of HIV now has detectable levels of the virus in her blood, the child’s doctors and U.S. health officials said on Thursday.
The Mississippi child’s stunning story, first disclosed at a medical meeting in March 2013, was the first account of an HIV-infected infant achieving what appeared to be a cure after receiving aggressive drug treatment within the first 30 hours of life.
The case raised hopes that more of the roughly 250,000 children who are born each year infected with the human immunodeficiency virus, which causes AIDS, might have a shot at a cure.Those hopes were dashed when the child’s doctors discovered last week that the HIV virus had begun replicating, Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infections Diseases, said at a press conference on Thursday.
“Certainly, this is a disappointing turn of events for this young child, the medical staff involved in the child’s care and the HIV/AIDS research community,” Fauci said in a statement.The girl, now 4, was born prematurely in a Mississippi clinic in 2010 to an HIV-infected mother who had received no prenatal care. After her birth, the child was rushed to the University of Mississippi Medical Center, where Dr Hannah Gay, a pediatric HIV specialist, decided to take aggressive action, offering the newborn a three-drug cocktail of powerful HIV medications. Normally, children suspected of HIV infection are given a milder course of treatments until tests can confirm the infection.
Read more on the HIV case at BlackVoices.com