Cardiac MR Assessment of cardiovascular effects of HIV and ART (Antiretroviral therapy)
- Prof. Fiona Mulcahy, Dr. Caroline Daly, Dr. Rosin Morgan

The increased survival associated with the advent of antiretroviral therapy (ART) for HIV in the mid 1990s has been associated with an increase in heart disease. It is widely debated whether this increase is due to effects of therapy, risk factor profile of patient group or indeed the HIV virus itself. The purpose of our study is to detect early changes in heart muscle structure and function as well as possible underlying silent ischaemia. By combining the MR results with fasting glucose and lipid levels we aim to detect early signs of heart disease in an asymptomatic male HIV population, compared with age and sex-matched controls.

A standard cardiovascular MRI with assessment of LV function, volumes and flow will be performed on patients and controls. Intravenous gadolinium will be used to assess for late gadolinium enhancement which is indicative of past inflammation, infarction or fibrosis. A subgroup of patients with known high triglyceride levels will be scanned with additional technology, spectroscopy, with the aim of detecting deposition of triglyceride in the myocardium.

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