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Very discouraged by Lipoatrophy

Jul 26, 2006

I have been positive for over 15 years. I was diagnosed after I became very sick in 1996 & went down to one T cell. I started treatment and thank God have always done well. I have dealt with all the issues surrounding HIV infection and the side effects of treatment. All but one...Out of nowhere and quite quickly I have severe lipoatrophy especially in my face. Is there any help? Can you give me any hope? For the first time I feel like giving up and feel I am losing the battle.

Response from Dr. Conway

I would have 2 pieces of advice. First, let us make sure that you are not taking an agent such as stavudine (d4T) that is associated with the development of lipoatrophy. Next, start exploring options for plastic surgery that are available in your area. The results are getting better and more durable as better fillers are available and surgeons become more experienced. Make sure you see "before and after" pictures to see how much things can improve.

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