Cardiac Effects of Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy in Perinatally HIV-Infected Children: The CHAART-2 Study

for the, CHAART-2 Investigator Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Background: Before the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), cardiac mortality and morbidity were common in HIV-infected children. Objectives: This study sought to identify long-term cardiovascular effects of HAART in HIV-infected children. Methods: The CHAART-2 (HAART-Associated Cardiotoxicity in HIV-Infected Children) study prospectively compared 148 echocardiograms from 74 HAART-exposed children to 860 echocardiograms from 140 HAART-unexposed but HIV-infected children from the Pulmonary and Cardiac Complications of Vertically Transmitted HIV Infection (P2C2 HIV) study. Both studies used similar protocol, centralized echocardiographic interpretation, and measures expressed as z-scores referenced to healthy controls. Associations between HAART exposure and echocardiographic measures were evaluated using generalized estimating equations. Results: Comparing the HAART-exposed and HAART-unexposed groups, any HAART exposure was positively associated with left ventricular (LV) fractional shortening (z-score for difference = 1.07; p = 0.02) and HAART exposure duration (z-score difference per year = 0.17; p = 0.003. LV mass was negatively associated with any HAART exposure (z-score difference = −0.64; p = 0.01) as was septal thickness (z-score difference = −0.93; p = 0.001). Duration of HAART exposure was negatively associated with LV end-systolic dimension and heart rate (z-score difference per year= −0.11; p = 0.05; and z-score difference per year = −0.10; p = 0.002, respectively). During 11 years of follow-up, in the HAART-exposed group, LV mass and LV end-diastolic septal thickness were lower whereas LV contractility and LV fractional shortening were higher when compared to the HAART-unexposed group. Conclusions: Cardiac structure and function were better in perinatally HIV-infected children exposed to HAART than in those of similar children from the pre-HAART era but did decline over time. Evidence-based strategies for cardiovascular monitoring are needed to inform treatment decisions to improve long-term cardiovascular health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2240-2247
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American College of Cardiology
Issue number18
StatePublished - Oct 31 2017


  • HIV
  • antiretroviral therapy
  • cardiomyopathy
  • pediatric

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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