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Oral health care considerations for patients with HIV/AIDS:

  • Base changes to dental care on the patient’s overall medical status, not the HIV status.
  • Baseline neutrophil and platelet counts are important to assess patient’s risk for bacterial infections or bleeding.
  • If required by state law, obtain consent to share HIV-related information with the patient’s other health care professionals.
  • Use antibiotic prophylaxis when the absolute neutrophil count drops below 500-1,000 cells/mm³.
  • Antibiotic prophylaxis is not indicated based on the CD4 cell count or HIV viral load.
  • Address comorbidities, such as liver disease, heart conditions, hyperglycemia, and nutritional disadvantage.
  • Address side-effects associated with anti-retroviral therapy.
  • Examine the head and neck region, and oral cavity for pathologies. (See the Image Gallery)