Drug Users With HIV at Much Higher Overdose Risk

By Robert Preidt

Drug Users with Aids Overdose RiskHIV-infected drug users are 74 percent more likely to have an overdose than those without HIV, a new evidence review finds.

Behavioral and biological factors may be among the reasons for this increased risk, according to the Rhode Island Hospital researchers. Drug overdose is a frequent cause of non-AIDS death among people with HIV.

The link between HIV infection and drug use is well documented, but the association between HIV and overdose has received less attention and was the focus of this study, which involved a review of 24 previous studies.

"Over the past 30 years, we have made impressive strides incaring for and prolonging the lives of people with HIV. Our study found that premature death by overdose is an issue that affects people with HIV disproportionately," study leader Traci Green, a researcher with Rhode Island Hospital and the Lifespan/Tufts/Brown Center for AIDS Research, said in a hospital news release.

Full story at Everyday Health