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Fatigue and AnemiaFatigue and Anemia
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Aug 12, 2008

Hello I am very new to this and was recently diagnosed positive on 10 July. My 1st test results came back and the numbers are CD4 - 53, VL 53,550, CD4% 4 I am always fatigued and have been for about a year but since finding out I have been even more fatigued. Is this just in my head or anything? I have started Atripla, Bactrim, and Ziromax. My Dr said that once my CD4 count starts to go up I will feel better. I am just worried I will feel fatigued for a long time as I am told and read that it taks a long time for CD4 counts to rise. Thanks

Response from Dr. Frascino


HIV-related fatigue is an extremely common complaint among us virally enhanced folks. The underlying cause often turns out to be multiple underlying causes working in tandem to zap our zip. There are a number of common underlying conditions that could result in fatigue in the setting of HIV/AIDS. The short list includes:

1. anemia;

2. hormonal imbalances (low testosterone, low thyroid hormone, adrenal insufficiency);

3. psychological causes (depression, stress);

4. medication side effects or toxicities;

5. occult infections;

6. inadequate nutrition, sleep or exercise.

There are also many not-so-common potential underlying causes. Take a read through the archives of this forum for a complete discussion of these potential energy zappers. Cooperative detective work with your HIV specialist should help identify the cause or causes of your fatigue. Many of the causes of HIV-related fatigue have specific treatments. You can read about them in the archives as well. We have entire chapters devoted to diagnosing HIV-related fatigue and treating HIV-related fatigue among other topics.

I wouldn't just wait for your CD4 count to rise. A thorough evaluation of your fatigue problem is warranted now.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob

dental amalgam in HIV+ patients

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