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Dentist
Jul 14, 2006

Maybe not the forum, but I highly respect your opinions. I am seeing a dentist within a week for general maintenance and clean up. first time since diagnosis. I am on sustiva and truvada. I undersatnd that my dentist is very close to people who work within my company, I am afarid to disclose my HIV status because they might seep it out. Do I need to tell my dentist my HIV status for a general clean up? I am afraid they will treat me differently. i tried swithcing dentsits but I found out that this is one of the few dentists in my area that my insurance covers. What are your thoughts? Should i be worried about anesthesia or the dental mediciens interfering with my drug regimen?

Response from Dr. Young

Thanks for your post.

We receive this question here from time to time. I always recommend full disclosure of health status (including HIV) to all of my patients' healthcare providers-- including dentists.

There are several reasons for this. First, in order for your healthcare providers to provide the best assessment and treatment of your health, they need to know all of your conditions. Failure to do so can delay the correct diagnosis and perhaps delay the appropriate treatment.

Second, if you're taking HIV medications (especially protease inhibitors), there is the very real possibility of drug-drug interactions. Some of these interactions could render anesthetics either inefffective or toxic.

Last, it's also fair for the persons who provide care to you, that you inform them of the potential health risks that blood exposures might entail.

We have laws that protect your confidentiality- If you have concerns about this, I'd be sure to ask your dentist about their procedures and HIPAA mechanisms.

Hope this helps, BY



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