Reducing cardiac risk

Actions the individual can take to reduce the risk of heart disease and arterial blockages are discussed fully in Treating metabolic changes, but include: regular exercise and reduced consumption of saturated fats (found in meat, processed cakes and biscuits, butter, full cream dairy products, fast foods) which can increase your blood cholesterol.

Stopping smoking and reducing alcohol intake to less than three units a day is also desirable. D:A:D study findings have confirmed that quitting smoking lowers cardiovascular risk in HIV-positive smokers, and that the risk continues to fall the longer they stay smoke-free, just as in HIV-negative smokers.1

Heart surgery may be an option for people who are developing a substantial blockage in a coronary artery. A stent can be inserted to keep the artery open. This operation has been performed in HIV-positive people.2


  1. Petoumenos K et al. Rates of cardiovascular disease following smoking cessation in patients with HIV infection: results from the D:A:D study. Seventeenth Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections, abstract 124, San Francisco, 2010
  2. Boccara F et al. Stent implantation for acute left main coronary artery occlusion in an HIV-infected patient on protease inhibitors. J Invasive Cardiol 14: 343-346, 2002
Community Consensus Statement on Access to HIV Treatment and its Use for Prevention

Together, we can make it happen

We can end HIV soon if people have equal access to HIV drugs as treatment and as PrEP, and have free choice over whether to take them.

Launched today, the Community Consensus Statement is a basic set of principles aimed at making sure that happens.

The Community Consensus Statement is a joint initiative of AVAC, EATG, MSMGF, GNP+, HIV i-Base, the International HIV/AIDS Alliance, ITPC and NAM/aidsmap

This content was checked for accuracy at the time it was written. It may have been superseded by more recent developments. NAM recommends checking whether this is the most current information when making decisions that may affect your health.

NAM’s information is intended to support, rather than replace, consultation with a healthcare professional. Talk to your doctor or another member of your healthcare team for advice tailored to your situation.