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Afraid of losing my face

Mar 22, 2008

I was infected 4 months ago. Although my infection is very recent, I may need treatment sooner rather than later as it seems like my viral setpoint is rather high (107000, CD4 555). Apart from all the other things (i.e. having acquired an aggressive strain, being a fast progressor, having resistance to treatment, developing AIDS related malignancies, etc), I am really worried about lipodystrophy. I am a medical student and have been doing modeling here and there. I understand that fat redistribution problems are not seen as frequently while on recent regimens. As of our current knowledge, approximately what percent of hiv patients on these regimens, including Atriplia, have experienced lypodystophy and facial fat loss? I assume we don't have enough data to be able to discuss the ling term effects of the current regimens. Thanks for your valuable time.

Response from Dr. Henry

I would guess that over the first 5 years of treatment < 5% of patients are developing significant lipoatrophy when prescribed one of the newer regimens (usually including Truvada or Epzicom) that don't contain one of the thymidine analogue reverse transcriptase inhibitors (such as D4T or AZT). I am rarely seeing much lipoatrophy among patients we are currently following. KH

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