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Bottoms Up!
Dec 9, 1999

Hi,

Last week my best friend Joe got a major promotion and raise at his job. We went to an early happy hour to celebrate. Not only is Joe the funniest man in the world, but he is also a big drinker. Not to be outdone and certainly not to spoil things, I followed in his footsteps last Friday and proceeded to get plastered. Finding my self home early Friday night - drunk - I wanted to go to sleep. All I had eaten were a few hors d'oeuvres and I wasn't hungry. I am on Ritonavir and Fortovase and didn't know what to do. So I did nothing and went to bed. Can you mix these two drugs with alcohol? What does "food" mean in this context - (high fat?, no fat? grapefruit juice? Etc.) Is booze a food? (My waistline thinks so!) If I were to try and eat a minimal amount what should it have been? I know it's not politically correct to admit to drinking too much on occasion, but it happens and I am sure I am not the only one who has wondered what the right thing to do is. Thanks for your advice.

Tom

PS - We had a great time!

Response from Dr. Pavia

Tom,

Hope the hangover is gone by now. It only takes a little food to improve the absorption of drugs like fortivase - a few crackers, even the peanuts at the bar. With norvir, the key benefit of food is making the drug easier on your stomach. High fat meals seem to be best IF norvir makes you nauseated, but if you don't have any problems, a few peanuts from the bar would have done the trick. Norvir has some alcohol in it, and the liquid has a fair bit. Sooo, you can tolerate taking them together, but sometimes you might end up nauseated ( or dialing the porcelain phone).

A better strategy is to take those pills early before you go out. A few hours won't make a big difference compared to forgetting your dose. Hopefully, Joe will have to work a few more months for the next promotion.

ATP



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