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hiv and hep c
Mar 16, 2007

My HIV doctor recommend that I do a clinical trial for hiv and hep c patients. He is currently treating my hiv to get my viral load under control (still at 33k and cd4 at 375), and then treating the hep c (which the viral load he said was high). In your experience it is better to just work with your "normal" doctor or do these clinical trials that seem to offer "security" in that they have a more diverse support group, constantly stay on top of the disease monitoring you, etc.? What has your medical experience been with these trials? Are they all safe? Are they more/less effective then working directly with the doc? I am a little confused and any light you can shed would be helpful. Thank you!

Response from Dr. McGovern

There are several reasons to consider a clinical trial. 1. Usually the treatment is offered free and that is important in these days of funding problems. 2. The laboratories are monitored in a very strict fashion so there is the security that multiple people are following up on you - your doctor, the study nurse and the research coordinator. 3. If there is a new development with the treatment, your physician will be informed quickly from the study site.

Alternatively, some people prefer to go to their own doctor due to their comfort level with their own provider. That is understandable.

Either way, if you have disease, it is a good idea to be treated.It is also important to have your HIV under control. I would make certain that you are not taking DDI because I wouldn't combine this with ribavirin.

Best of luck with your decision.



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