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Effecacy of antivirals for less time
Apr 15, 2005

I have a coworker who stuck herself with a needle of an aides patient. They started her on retrovir,Epivir,Crixivan antivirals for four weeks. She is just in her first week and is quite ill with nausea and lethargy, despite antiemetics. What is the effecacy of she only takes these antivirals for two weeks or less? She also has a history of lupus although in remission at this time.

Response from Dr. Wohl

No one knows. The 4 week rule is made up. There are no good data to indicate that 4 weeks is better than 2 weeks or no different than 6 weeks. Her options are to stop it all or stop only the Crixivan, or change the Crixivan to another drug such as Viracept.

If availability of an alternative medication is an issue, I would opt to just continue the Retrovir and Epivir for the remainder of the treatment period.

DW



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