Changes in use of antiretroviral therapy in regions of Europe over time. EuroSIDA Study Group

AIDS. 1998 Oct 22;12(15):2031-9. doi: 10.1097/00002030-199815000-00015.


Objectives: To analyse use of antiretroviral therapy within Europe between 1994 and 1997.

Design: From September 1994, the EuroSIDA study (cohorts I-III) has prospectively followed unselected HIV-infected patients from 50 clinical centres in 17 European countries (total, 7230).

Methods: Patients under follow-up at half-year intervals from September 1994 (n=2871) to September 1997 (n=3682) were classified according to number of drugs currently used (none, one, two, three, four or more). Use of antiretroviral therapy was stratified by CD4 cell count (< 200 versus > or = 200 x 10(6)/l) and by region of Europe (south, central, or north). Frequency data were compared by chi2 test and logistic regression modelling.

Results: The proportion of patients on antiretroviral monotherapy diminished over time (1994, 42%; 1997, 3%), as did the proportion of patients without therapy (from 37 to 9%). Over time, the proportion of patients on triple (from 2 to 55%) and quadruple (from 0 to 9%) therapy increased, whereas use of dual therapy peaked in 1996 and subsequently fell. In the three regions of Europe, changes in use of antiretroviral therapy differed substantially. However, as of September 1997, only minor differences persisted. The proportion of patients on dual, triple, and quadruple therapy were as follow: south, 33, 52 and 5%, respectively; central, 23, 55 and 14%, respectively; north, 16, 59 and 10%, respectively. In September 1997, odds for use of three or more drugs including at least one protease inhibitor did not differ significantly between regions.

Conclusions: Use of antiretroviral therapy in Europe has changed dramatically towards combination treatment in the last few years. Regional differences in use of antiretroviral therapy have decreased, and by September 1997 only minor differences remained. Antiretroviral therapy with three or more drugs and use of protease inhibitors has become more common in all regions of Europe.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anti-HIV Agents / administration & dosage
  • Anti-HIV Agents / therapeutic use*
  • CD4 Lymphocyte Count
  • Cohort Studies
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Europe
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy*
  • HIV Protease Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • HIV Protease Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Models, Statistical
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'
  • Prospective Studies
  • Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors / therapeutic use


  • Anti-HIV Agents
  • HIV Protease Inhibitors
  • Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors