Background: In 1998, Senegal launched one of Africa's first antiretroviral therapy (ART) programs. Since then, the number of treated patients in Africa has substantially increased thanks to simplification in treatment management. Although good outcomes over the first years of ART have been observed in sub-Saharan Africa, little is known about the long-term (>5 years) risks of virological failure and drug resistance and about second-line treatment response.
Methods: Patients from the ANRS-1215 cohort in Senegal, started with either one nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor or indinavir, a first-generation nonboosted protease inhibitor, followed for >6 months and having >1 viral load (VL) measurement were included. Virological failure was defined as 2 consecutive VL measurements >1000 copies/mL.
Results: Of the 366 patients included, 89% achieved a VL <500 copies/mL. The risk of virological failure at 12, 24, and 60 months was 5%, 16%, and 25%, being higher in younger patients (P = 0.05), those receiving a protease inhibitor-containing regimen (P = 0.05), and those with lower adherence (P = 0.03). The risk of resistance to any drug at 12, 24, and 60 months was 3%, 11%, and 18%. After virological failure, 60% of the patients were switched to second-line treatments. Although 81% of the patients achieved virological success, the risk of virological failure was 27% at 24 months, mostly in patients with multiple resistances.
Conclusions: In this cohort, virological outcomes for first-line treatments were good compared with those from high-resource settings. However, the rate of virological failure for second-line treatment was high, probably because of accumulation of resistances.