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Elevated ALT/AST after drug change

Sep 7, 2008

Dr Holodniy:

I have been HIV+ since 3/2006 when diagnosed w/PCP. I started Kaletra/Truvada immediately and recently switched off the Kaletra to Isentress due to severe gut side effects and the typical cholesterol issues.

I have never had an issue with elevated ALT/AST tests, but now 1 month after the switch my cholesterol has dropped to normal, my cd4's jumped from 238 to 288 (14.9% to 16%) and viral load still undetectable. However, my AST/ALT went from 23/19 to 70/106. I rarely drink (a drink a week) have neg. hep C test on same labs and none of the other reasons I found listed on resources fit. My doctor advised that if they are elevated next month they'll do a sonogram. Then I read another resource stating that ALT/AST can also be 2x the normal for many reasons and simply fluctuate.

So, I'm just a little concerned and wondered if you had any idea why the quick jump. Thanks so much for your answers.

Response from Dr. Holodniy

Increases in these liver enzymes were seen in the clinical trials in people taking isentress. They were generally mild (as in your case). Given the temporal increase to when you switched, it is likely as a result of the med. If it does not increase any more then that, I would not be concerned.

False positive
Indeterminate HIV-test

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