People with HIV are now able to live long and healthy lives due to the development of very effective treatments. However, these people may be at higher risk of developing certain types of cancer due to HIV's effect on the immune system.
We also discuss how people with HIV can lower their cancer risk and how doctors treat cancer in these individuals.
HIV and cancer risk
HIV affects the body's immune system by specifically targeting CD4 cells, which are a type of white blood cell. If left untreated, HIV can reduce this cell count.
Generally, the higher a person's CD4 cell count, the better. Low levels of CD4 cells leave the body vulnerable to infections. Research from 2016 also shows that lower levels CD4 cells reduce the body's ability to fight off early forms of cancer.
People with HIV are at higher risk of certain cancers compared with individuals without HIV. Read more via Medical News Today