The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App 
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
Ask the Experts About

Choosing Your MedsChoosing Your Meds
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
Recent AnswersAsk a Question
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

Second opinion on selecting starting regimin-treatment naive

Apr 30, 2003

Ready to start meds.... My CD4's have dropped to 310 with a VL of 66,700. My doctor and I feel it's time to start I need some help with deciding which combination. His first recommendation was a combination with AZT,Epivir & Susteva. I wanted to a once a day and wanted to avoid some of the side effects of AZT, so I've opted for Epivir, Viread & Sustiva, once a day at night with apparently no food restrictions per my doc.

Question 1: The Viread docs say to take with food, however my doctor says this is outdated and you don't have to take it with food. What do you think?

Question 2: Does this sound like a good combination with great long term suppression given my current viral load? I'm seriously committed to not missing any doses.

Quetion 3: I'm a frequent drinker and have heard this has a big impact on the immune system. How damaging is it to drink twice a week when living with HIV?

Summary: I'm 33, Tested HIV positive 6/2002, last negative test was 5/2001. Phenotype suggests possible resistence to Viramune, but nothing else. No symptoms yet, just some fatigue. I'm currently taking Allegra & Nasacort for allergies/chronic sinus drip, Paxil for depression & propecia to keep my hair from falling out. Also, lots of vitamin supplements.

Test numbers: 6/2002 - CD4 391, CD8 880, 23, VL 22,000 9/2002 - CD4 312, CD8 624, 26, VL 32,000 11/2002 - CD4 512, CD8 570, 35, VL 50,290 1/2003 - CD4 355, CD8 1,465, 24, VL 28,483 4/2003 CD4 310, CD8 1,032, 18, VL 67,700

Thank you very much for your support and feedback. I've spent hours on this site reading. You guys are amazing!

Response from Dr. Young

Thank you for your questions.

The combination of TDF/3TC/efavirenz has been studied in the recent Gilead 903 study-- I'd refer you to conference coverage at TheBody for details. The combination performed comparably to the excellent comparator arm of d4T/3TC/efavirenz and has decreased toxicity over the first two years of study. Indeed, the patients on the study with low CD4 counts or high viral loads did very well on the medication combination.

The dietary recommendations that your doctor has made are definately consistent with the current data about tenofovir. I've been recommending no specifics about diet to my patients, as most persons who took the medication in the largest trials did not take the medication with a fatty meal, as was suggested in earlier studies.

Alcohol in moderation should not have significant impact on the performance of the medications or on the immune system, per se. My biggest concern with any recreational ingestion, rather, is whether the ingestion(s) might result in problems with adherence. Short of this, a drink twice a week should not be problematic.

Good luck, BY

AIDS Treatmaent refusal
Is it to late?

  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

 Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS



This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint