Dutch cohort study from 2010 confirms that seropositives who were healthy at the time of their diagnoses (asymptomatic) and refused treatment have a life expectancy equivalent to that of the normal population!!!
So one wonders what HIV tests are really "diagnosing" in asymptomatic people...
... and one wonders, too, what the life expectancy of those who accepted treatment is/was
Life expectancy of recently diagnosed asymptomatic HIV-infected patients approaches that of uninfected individuals
Objective: To compare life expectancies between recently diagnosed HIV-infected patients and age and sex-matched uninfected individuals from the general population.
Design: National observational HIV cohort in the Netherlands.
Methods: Four thousand, six hundred and twelve patients diagnosed with HIV between 1998 and 2007 and still antiretroviral therapy-naive as of 24 weeks after diagnosis were selected. Progression to death compared to the age and sex-matched general population was studied with a multivariate hazards model in 4174 (90.5%) patients without AIDS events at 24 weeks. Life expectancy and number of life years lost were calculated using the predicted survival distribution.
Results: During 17 580 person-years of follow-up since 24 weeks after diagnosis [median follow-up 3.3 years, interquartile range (IQR) 1.6–5.8], 118 deaths occurred, yielding a mortality rate of 6.7 [95% confidence interval (CI) 5.5–8.0] per 1000 person-years. Median CD4 cell counts at 24 weeks were 480 cells/μl (IQR 360–650). According to the model, the median number of years lived from age 25 was 52.7 (IQR 44.2–59.3; general population 53.1) for men and 57.8 (49.2–63.7; 58.1) for women without CDC-B event. The number of life years lost varied between 0.4 if diagnosed with HIV at age 25 and 1.4 if diagnosed at age 55; for patients with a CDC-B event this range was 1.8–8.0 years.
Conclusion: The life expectancy of asymptomatic HIV-infected patients who are still treatment-naive and have not experienced a CDC-B or C event at 24 weeks after diagnosis approaches that of non-infected individuals. However, follow-up time is short compared to the expected number of years lived.
(*) Jargon for "untreated".