Management of immunosuppression and antiviral treatment before and after heart transplant for HIV-associated dilated cardiomyopathy

Simona Di Giambenedetto, E. Durante-Mangoni, C. Maiello, G. Limongelli, C. Sbreglia, D. Pinto, C. Amarelli, G. Pacileo, A. Perrella, F. Agrusta, G. Romano, C. Marra, G. Nappi, R. Utili

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6 Citazioni (Scopus)


Infection with HIV may lead to the development of cardiomyopathy as improved antiretroviral regimens continue to prolong patient life. However, advanced therapeutic options, such as heart transplant, have until recently been precluded to HIV-positive persons. A favorable long-term outcome has been obtained after kidney or liver transplant in HIV-positive recipients fulfilling strict virological and clinical criteria. We recently reported the first heart transplant in a HIV-infected patient carried out in our center. In this article, we detail the major challenges we faced with the management of antiretroviral and immunosuppressive treatments over the first 3 years post-transplant. The patient had developed dilated cardiomyopathy while on antiretroviral treatment with zidovudine, lamivudine and efavirenz. He was in WHO Stage 1 of HIV infection and had normal CD4+ count and persistently undetectable HIV-RNA. In spite of cardiac resynchronization therapy and maximal drug therapy, the patient progressed to end stage heart failure, requiring heart transplant. He was placed on a standard immune suppressive protocol including cyclosporine A and everolimus. Despite its potential pharmacokinetic interaction with efavirenz, everolimus was chosen to reduce the long-term risk of opportunistic neoplasia. Plasma levels of both drugs were monitored and remained within the target range, although high doses of everolimus were needed. There were no infectious, neoplastic or metabolic complications during a 3-year follow-up. In summary, our experience supports previous data showing that cardiac transplantation should not be denied to carefully selected HIV patients. Careful management of drug interactions and adverse events is mandatory.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)113-120
Numero di pagine8
RivistaInternational Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2014


  • Adult
  • Anti-HIV Agents
  • Cardiomyopathy, Dilated
  • Drug Interactions
  • HIV Infections
  • Heart Transplantation
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Male
  • Treatment Outcome


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