Francisco HIV/HCV Coinfection Community Forum on June 7
On Monday, June 7, the San Francisco Hepatitis C Task
Force and the city's HIV Health Services Planning
Council will hold a community forum to discuss hepatitis
C virus (HCV) coinfection in HIV positive gay and
bisexual men. The forum will take place from 6:00-8:00
pm at the Eureka Valley Recreation Center, 100 Collingwood
Street, San Francisco.
one-third of people with HIV
are estimated to be coinfected with HCV,
and hepatitis C is now a leading cause of death for in HIV positive
The issue of HIV/HCV
coinfection among men who have sex with men has come on
the radar only in the last decade. Clinicians first began reporting
outbreaks of apparently sexually transmitted acute hepatitis
C among gay men in the early 2000s in the U.K., followed by
large cities in Europe, Australia, and the U.S.
have produced mixed findings about how HCV is spread among this
group, but most find transmission is linked to sex practices
including fisting, sex while high, sex with multiple partners
and in group sex environments, and presence of other sexually
transmitted diseases. Studies disagree about whether unprotected
anal intercourse is a risk factor for HCV transmission, but
most experts believe transmission occurs via small amounts of
HCV-infected blood, not semen.
HIV/HCV coinfection is a concern because some studies indicate
disease progresses more rapidly in HIV positive people and
coinfected individuals also do not respond as well to interferon-based
therapy for hepatitis C.
Experts recommend that HIV positive people should be tested
for HCV, but some providers remain reluctant to do so for
patients who do not have a history of injection drug use (as
shared needles are the most common HCV transmission route in
the U.S.). The New York State Department of Health AIDS Institute
recently revised its guidelines to recommend annual HCV testing
for HIV positive people who use injection drugs, have more than
1 sexual partner, or have are men who have unprotected sex with
Participants at Monday's forum will include Brad Hare, MD, medical
director of the UCSF Positive Health Program at San Francisco
General Hospital; Val Robb, RN, who runs the Positive Health
Program's Hepatitis C Project; San Francisco District 8 supervisor
Bevan Dufty; and a panel of coinfected individuals.
Francisco Hepatitis C Task Force.
C Laird. Forum on HIV/hep C co-infection. Bay Area Reporter.
June 3, 2010.
York State Department of Health AIDS Institute. Clinical Guidelines
Update: Hepatitis C Virus in HIV-Infected Patients. May 2010.