Choosing Wisely:

Avoid quarterly viral load testing of patients who have durable viral suppression, unless clinically indicated.

Rationale and Comments: Viral load testing should be conducted before initiation of treatment, two to eight weeks after initiation or modification of therapy, and then every three to four months to confirm continuous viral suppression. In clinically stable patients who have durable virological suppression for more than two years, clinicians may extend the interval to six months.
Sponsoring Organizations:
  • HIV Medicine Association
  • Sources:
  • IDSA and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services guidelines
  • Disciplines:
  • Infectious disease
  • References: • Aberg JA, Gallant JE, Ghanem KG, Emmanuel P, Zingman BS, Horberg MA; Infectious Diseases Society of America. Primary care guidelines for the management of persons infected with HIV: 2013 update by the HIV Medicine Association of the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Clin Infect Dis. 2014 Jan;58(1):1-10.
    • Panel on Antiretroviral Guidelines for Adults and Adolescents. Guidelines for the use of antiretroviral agents in HIV-1-infected adults and adolescents. Department of Health and Human Services. Available at 2015 Apr. 288 p.

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