Coronary artery disease 28(2) 166-172 doi 10.1097/MCA.0000000000000450
Highly active antiretroviral treatment (HAART) has considerably increased the life expectancy of patients infected with HIV. Coronary artery disease is a leading cause of mortality in patients infected with HIV. This is primarily attributed to their increased survival, HAART-induced metabolic derangements, and to HIV itself. The pathophysiology of atherosclerosis in HIV is both multifactorial and complex – involving direct endothelial injury and dysfunction, hypercoagulability, and a significant contribution from traditional cardiac risk factors. The advent of HAART has since heralded a remarkable improvement in outcomes, but at the expense of other unforeseen issues. It is thus of paramount importance to swiftly recognize and manage acute coronary syndromes in HIV-infected patients to attenuate adverse complications, which should translate into improved clinical outcomes.