Preliminary results released by the African Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology scientists on the dosage to be given to different patients on anti-retrovirals, have indicated that for the drugs to be effective, the dosage should match an individualâ€™s weight and gender.
National Aids Council Chief Executive, Dr Tapiwa Magure said once an HIV positive patient starts treatment, clinicians take into consideration a variety of factors when choosing the right combination of drugs for that person.
He said research being conducted locally is set to improve the way clinicians prescribe ARVâ€™s.
While malaria or TB medication does not have a link between dose and weight, research has shown that ARVâ€™s tend to react differently in different people.
Even other pharmaceutical drugs when taken together with ARVâ€™s have been found to cause side effects or decrease the effectiveness of some anti-retroviral drugs.
People taking ARVâ€™s are supposed to have regular liver, and kidney function tests as well as CD4 count and to that end, Dr Magure said NAC has procured a variety of machines to help monitor people on anti-retroviral therapy.
The results of research conducted by the local scientists on 76 people who are on ARVâ€™s have so far shown that the patients should have different doses according to their weight and gender.
The findings from the blood samples have shown that the dose of 600 milligrammes per day for everyone on ARVs has side-effects on the nervous systems on some people depending on their weight and gender.
Anti-retroviral drugs slow the replication of HIV in the body but the drugs cannot stop the replication completely.
Scientists from all over the world are working on finding a drug that will be able to completely eradicate the virus from the body.