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Sassoon starts speciality clinic for HIV-infected children

In a bid to provide nutritional diet to the children infected by the HIV virus,a speciality clinic has been started at the Sassoon General Hospital.

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas | Pune |
February 6, 2009 12:38:11 am

In a bid to provide nutritional diet to the children infected by the HIV virus,a speciality clinic has been started at the Sassoon General Hospital.

Dr Sandhya Khadse,head of the department of Paediatrics at Sassoon General Hospital and in-charge of the clinic said that in addition to giving adequate nutrition,it will also study the effect of a new anti-HIV drugs on children.

Nearly 1,000 children with HIV will avail of anti retroviral therapy (ART) at the specialty clinic.

The B J Medical College (BJMC ) in association with John Hopkins University,USA has undertaken a study at the BJMC clinical trial unit to find out the response to a new anti-HIV treatment for the children.

There is resistance among children to an anti-HIV drug— Nevaripine,says Dr G Sastry,Clinical Research Site leader for the project. As part of this trial,such infants who have not received a single dose of Nevaripine (NVP) ( an anti-HIV drug to ensure prevention of transmission from mother to child) and those who have received the NVP dose will be studied. Around 42 children will be selected in two groups with a different combination of anti-HIV drugs. One set will be given drugs like AZT,3TC and NVP,while the other group will include the same drugs barring NVP and will be replaced with a protease inhibitor.

The study has been approved by the Indian Council of Medical Research and has received grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH),USA,says Khadse. While the clinic will be a place of research and studies,their basic aim is to provide care,support and psycho-social counselling to these children.

While they are availing of ART from the centre,it is important to support the medicines with adequate nutrition.

Hence,the clinic has even displayed boards that recommend the amount of food— with calorie intake,protein,fat and carbohydrate content— that the children should have.

The clinic was inaugurated at a function on Wednesday.

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