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New Vision

How long can one born with HIV live?


Dear Doctor,

My niece born with HIV is now 25-years-old and doing well on ARVs, but we have been wondering how long she will live.



Dear Enid,

With the advent of antiretroviral therapy or treatment with ARVs, people living with HIV (PLHIV), including children can live good quality and long lives.  
So, instead of spending time guessing or wondering how long your niece will live, you should encourage her to practice positive living by taking her drugs with good adherence, eating a balanced diet and avoiding harmful practices such as excessive alcohol consumption and smoking.
With these, she should be able to live out her normal life expectancy like any other person even though she has an incurable disease.
We now emphasize the fact that PLHIV need not die of AIDS like it was the case in the past when we watched helplessly as our loved ones wasted away because there was no treatment.  
We however, need to work with people like your niece to see to it that the virus they carry is not passed on to others especially children if they choose to have them.
This way, we shall one day commemorate an HIV and AIDS free world when the last person living with the disease passes on and we have no more new infections.


All articles are republished on AEGIS by permission. Material may not be redistributed, posted to any other location, published or used for broadcast without written authorization from Managing Director/Editor-in-chief, The New Vision, P.O. Box 9815, Kampala - Uganda, Tel/fax: 256-41-235221, E-mail: 

Information in this article was accurate in June 17, 2013. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.