The switching spiral: a triumph of hope over benefit?

from The AIDS Reader

Graeme Moyle MD, MBBS

The HIV therapy market is expanding. Patients are not only living longer and therefore continuing therapy but also taking more antiretroviral medications simultaneously. Persons already receiving therapy represent the vast majority of the treatment market; patients who are currently naive represent a minority at most clinics. So, while there remains interest in competing over which drugs to begin with, there is also considerable interest by pharmaceutical companies in generating sales and gaining market share by encouraging physicians to switch their patients from their current regimens, which have often served them well for a number of years, to the new or alternative agents. The usual justification, often based on short-term or even in vitro data, is that the new or alternative drug carries a lower risk of causing or contributing to a future adverse event.

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