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Can dextramphetamine lower my CD4 T-cell count
May 16, 2008

My psychiatrist prescribed 5 mg of dextroamphetamine twice per day for depression and fatigue. Since then my CD4 count has dropped from 350 to 250, even though I switched to raltegravir, etravirine, norvir,prezista, and truvada four months ago, and have an undetectable viral load for the first time in years. Could dextroamphetamine be causing my drop in T-cells?

Response from Dr. Frascino


No, dextroamphetamine would not cause a decrease in CD4 counts. However, there are many other things that could! I'd suggest you discuss this with your HIV specialist. He is in the best position to evaluate what's going on. Also, I'd check to see if your "CD4% has declined, as this is a better indicator of immune status and is less sensitive to many non-HIV factors that can cause absolute CD4 numbers to vary up or down. That your viral load is now undetectable "for the first time in years," is excellent news. Decreasing HIV viral replication should allow for some degree of immune reconstitution (increase in CD4 and CD4%), although there may be a delay before this becomes evident.

Good luck!

Dr. Bob

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