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Fatigue and AnemiaFatigue and Anemia
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clinical trial publications on anemia
Dec 8, 2000

Hey Dr. Bob,

Just read your entertaining responses to some questions on this site. Now I have a question of my own. My practitioner doesn't seem to know much about treating anemia -- except to prescribe blood transfusions. My partner has had several and I think I may be headed in that direction. Not sure our HMO would cover the medication your talked about. However if we gave them some published reports about how it works maybe it would help. So my question is can you give me some references that we could look up and give to our practitioner and the HMO. Sounds like you really favor the medication over a blood transfusion. Wish you could be my doctor.Thanks for all you do for all of us.

Ricky Martin (just kidding)

Response from Dr. Frascino

Dear Ricky Martin,

Now let's see -- were you "just kidding" when you said you wished I was your doctor or being Ricky Martin??? You know how I like it when the stars write in!!! So Ricky, I'd be happy to give you some references relating to blood transfusions and HIV infection. Blood transfusions pose additional risks to those of us who are HIV positive particularly because we have varying degrees of existing immunodeficiency due to the HIV virus infection, which predisposes us to opportunistic infections and malignancies. Blood transfusions in and of themselves are immunosuppressive and the last thing we need is more immuno-suppression on top of our already compromised immune systems. Below are several of many references I can cite.

Moore and colleagues' found that transfusion was associated with increased risk of death in a study of 1791 patients with HIV infection. (Moore RD et al. 6th Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections. 1999;706).

Mudido and colleagues' showed that transfusions increase plasma levels of HIV-1 (viral load), which may be related to accelerated disease in transfusion recipients. (Mudido PM, et al. Transfusion, 1996;860-865).

Sloand and colleagues' demonstrated that cytomegalovirus (CMV), wasting, and bacterial infections were significantly increased in patients who had received transfusions. (Sloand E, et al. Transfusion, 1994; 34:48-53).

Popovsky's article has similar findings. Popovsky MA, et al. Transfusion, 1995;35:612-616).

Now Ricky, I have a question for you -- what's it like "livin' la vida loca"?

Happy Holidays


very worried

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