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Is Flora Sinus safe for HIV+ persons on meds?
Oct 17, 2008

My dad gave me a bottle of "Flora Sinus Seasonal Support" to help with my sinuses. It is produced by a company called Nutri-Health Supplements. I am always wary about taking supplements before I know how safe they are for HIV+ persons on HAART. I am currently taking Atripla and want to make sure this is a safe option for helping clear my sinuses before I begin taking it. Thanks for your advice.

Response from Dr. Frascino


Your wariness and caution regarding supplements, herbs, over-the-counter remedies, etc. is wise and warranted! Many of these agents can result in significant and harmful drug-drug or drug-supplement interactions.

Flora Sinus Seasonal Support is described as a "patent-pending" formula combining "22 billion cells of targeted probiotics and the sinus support of N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) for nasal and bronchial health." The small print on the product states "these statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease." That sums things up nicely. Why take a product that "is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease" and which has not been evaluated for safety or efficacy by the Food and Drug Administration??? I'd tell your well-meaning dad "thanks, but no thanks."

Sinus problems are extremely common in us "virally enhanced" folks. If your HIV specialist can't help with this problem, ask him to refer you to an HIV-knowledgeable ENT specialist. There is much that can be done to control annoying HIV-associated chronic sinus problems.

Be well. Stay well.

Dr. Bob

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