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HIV-Positive Men Are More Affected By Alcohol

HIV-Positive Men Are More Affected By Alcohol


The Spirits Business

By Annie Hayes

April 23, 2015


Men who are HIV-positive need fewer drinks to feel the effects of alcohol, according to new research


The research by Yale University and reviewed data on more than 2,600 men enrolled in the Veterans Aging Cohort Study, and asked both HIV-infected and uninfected veterans how many alcoholic drinks it took for them to feel a “buzz” or “high”.


They found that HIV-infected men were more sensitive to the effects of alcohol than uninfected men, and felt the effects after drinking, on average, a quarter less of a drink than uninfected men.


Dr. Amy C. Justice, professor of medicine and public health at Yale, said: “All else equal, people who have HIV infection have a lower tolerance for alcohol than similar people without HIV infection.


“It’s not clear whether HIV-infected individuals are simply more susceptible to alcohol or if they achieve higher concentrations of alcohol in the blood from the same number of drinks.”


The finding also brings into question how compliant HIV-infected men who drink may be with their medication.


Justice added: “Once people have HIV, alcohol makes it less likely they will take their antiretroviral medications.”


The study was published April 17 in the journal AIDS and Behavior.


Following the findings, researchers suggest HIV-infected patients should be better informed that they are more susceptible to the effects of drinking.