Mary E. Wilson, MD; C. Fordham von Reyn, MD; Harvey V. Fineberg, MD, PhD
Objective: To review risks for infection and to outline strategies to protect the health of travelers infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
Data Sources: Original reports and summaries of the geographic distribution and frequency of infections as well as of special risks these infections impose on HIV-infected persons. The recommendations incorporate guidelines published by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization.
Study Selection: Sources containing the most recent, pertinent information.
Data Synthesis: Infections of the gastrointestinal tract are common in all travelers to developing countries and are likely to be more frequent, severe, and difficult to treat in HIV-infected persons. Prominent among the respiratory tract infections that pose special risks to HIV-infected travelers are influenza, measles, and fungal infections with geographically focal distributions. The most common vector-borne infection, malaria, appears to present relatively little, if any, incremental risk to the HIV-infected traveler. Persons with HIV infection respond less vigorously to vaccines and have a higher frequency of adverse reactions to antimicrobial agents. Nevertheless, immunizations and chemoprophylaxis can reduce the risk for many travel-related infections. Additionally, there are protective measures that travelers can take to minimize exposure to pathogens.
Conclusions: By understanding the risks for disease in different destinations, assessing patients' HIV status, counseling patients about travel plans and personal protective measures, appropriately using vaccines and chemoprophylaxis, as well as instituting early treatment of infection, physicians can help HIV-infected patients to preserve their health during travel.
Mary E. Wilson, C. Fordham von Reyn, Harvey V. Fineberg. Infections in HIV-infected Travelers: Risks and Prevention. Ann Intern Med. 1991;114:582–591. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-114-7-582
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1991;114(7):582-591.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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