Medicare expands coverage for HIV-related facial disorder

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted April 5, 2010

Print  |   Email  |   Respond  |   Reprints  |   Like Facebook  |   Share Twitter  |   Tweet Linkedin

Medicare now will cover facial injections for beneficiaries with depression due to the appearance of severely hollowed cheeks resulting from HIV drug treatment, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced March 23.

Facial lipodystrophy is a localized loss of fat from the face, causing a thin appearance in the cheeks. The condition can be a side effect of certain kinds of medications that individuals receive as part of an HIV treatment regimen. CMS said individuals may have negative psychological effects from their appearance that cause them to discontinue their therapies.

The injections Medicare will cover are FDA-approved "fillers" that are injected under the facial skin. Data show that the injections improve patient self-image and relieve symptoms of depression, and could lead to improved compliance with HIV treatments, CMS said.

Note: This item originally appeared at

Back to top



Read story

Confronting bias against obese patients

Medical educators are starting to raise awareness about how weight-related stigma can impair patient-physician communication and the treatment of obesity. Read story

Read story


American Medical News is ceasing publication after 55 years of serving physicians by keeping them informed of their rapidly changing profession. Read story

Read story

Policing medical practice employees after work

Doctors can try to regulate staff actions outside the office, but they must watch what they try to stamp out and how they do it. Read story

Read story

Diabetes prevention: Set on a course for lifestyle change

The YMCA's evidence-based program is helping prediabetic patients eat right, get active and lose weight. Read story

Read story

Medicaid's muddled preventive care picture

The health system reform law promises no-cost coverage of a lengthy list of screenings and other prevention services, but some beneficiaries still might miss out. Read story

Read story

How to get tax breaks for your medical practice

Federal, state and local governments offer doctors incentives because practices are recognized as economic engines. But physicians must know how and where to find them. Read story

Read story

Advance pay ACOs: A down payment on Medicare's future

Accountable care organizations that pay doctors up-front bring practice improvements, but it's unclear yet if program actuaries will see a return on investment. Read story

Read story

Physician liability: Your team, your legal risk

When health care team members drop the ball, it's often doctors who end up in court. How can physicians improve such care and avoid risks? Read story

  • Stay informed
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS
  • LinkedIn