Treatment of rheumatic diseases in patients with HCV and HIV infection

Autoimmun Rev. 2008 Dec;8(2):100-3. doi: 10.1016/j.autrev.2008.07.009. Epub 2008 Aug 9.


A wide variety of rheumatic diseases has been documented in the presence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. In this conditions, physicians are refrained from using corticosteroids and/or immunosuppressants agents because of the risk of favouring viral replication and the progression of the underlying viral disease. In the present review we have focused our attention on the possible role of cyclosporine A (CsA), anti-Tumour Necrosis Factor (TNF) alpha agents in the treatment of HIV or HCV infected autoimmune patients. The results drown from the literature and from our personal experience confirm the safety of CsA and anti-TNF alpha agents, in terms of viral load and liver toxicity. A limited experience also suggest that both therapies can be given in combination in rheumatoid arthritis patients without increasing the risk of adverse events.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies / therapeutic use*
  • Cyclosporine / administration & dosage
  • Cyclosporine / therapeutic use*
  • HIV Infections / complications*
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / complications*
  • Humans
  • Rheumatic Diseases / complications
  • Rheumatic Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Rheumatic Diseases / immunology
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / immunology
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / metabolism


  • Antibodies
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Cyclosporine