The Particulars: Liver disease—often due to co-infection with hepatitis c virus (HCV) infection—has been established as an important cause of serious illness and death among patients with HIV. Rates of HCV reinfection among patients with HIV and whether patients who clear HCV with treatment have protective immunity against reinfection, have not been well established.

Data Breakdown: British investigators conducted a retrospective study of 858 gay men with HIV/HCV co-infection. Of them, 191 cleared HCV infection but were reinfected with the virus. Overall, 20% of patients spontaneously cleared their reinfection. Treatment response rates for those undergoing therapy for reinfection were 73% for those with genotypes 1 and 4 and 100% for genotypes 2 and 3.

Take Home Pearl: The incidence of HCV reinfection among gay men with HIV appears to be high. Study authors recommend enhanced surveillance of patients who have cleared HCV infection to enable early detection and treatment of reinfection.