Purpose of review: To describe the impact of highly active antiretroviral therapy on the burden of pneumococcal disease and advances in our understanding of the impact of HIV on this disease.
Recent findings: Although highly active antiretroviral therapy has reduced the burden of pneumococcal disease among HIV-infected adults, these infections remain far more common than in HIV uninfected adults. HIV-infected adults who smoke or have comorbidities are at particular risk. In the absence of highly active antiretroviral therapy, pneumococcal meningitis has emerged in Africa as a major disease burden with a high mortality among HIV-infected children and adults. Conjugate pneumococcal vaccine protects HIV-infected infants from pneumococcal pneumonia. In the United States, where conjugate vaccine is given to children, herd immunity has reduced the burden of invasive pneumococcal disease among HIV-infected adults.
Summary: The pneumococcus remains a significant cause of morbidity and mortality among HIV-infected children and adults, both in developed and in developing countries.