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Is St John's Wort safe for HIV Woman
May 9, 2000

Hi, I am a 34 yr old woman who has been POZ since approx 1986. I'm on viramume/combivir and glucophage the latter prescribed for insilun resistance. My first combo was viracept/combivir but because of the lipo (fatty stomach) I decided to switch to viramune. That was Feb of this year. My numbers are excellent and have been for over 3 years now. (Undetectable and TC=600). I've always suffered from PMS but in the last 6 months it seems to have gotten worse. Mood swings, depression, anger and irritability are all part of it and if I have 2 good weeks out of the month I am lucky. I've read somewhere but I don't remember where that woman who are HIV seem to experience PMS more severely than woman who are HIV-. My first question is have you read anything like that are do you know where I can find more info on the subject? My second question is about St John's Wart. Is it safe for someone like me? I've read that St John's Wart may lessen the effects of some HIV drugs. I would like to try something natural and avoid using a antidepressent but if St John's Wort is not safe for people who are HIV then maybe I have no choice. Any feed back would be greatly appreciated.

Response from Dr. Sullivan

We do not have enough information on the use of St Johns wort and I would advise against its use. John L. Sullivan, M.D.

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