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Jul 30, 2006

I tested hiv positive in June-and am starting meds next week-the clinic I go to is going to start me on Atripla,my question is side effects-mainly any fat wasting or lipodystrophy side effects,is there a concern with that and this drug?

Response from Dr. Young

Thanks for your post.

The components of Atripla (tenofovir, FTC, efavirenz) are among the most widely prescribed in the US and Europe. In general, the medications are very well tolerated.

The first and most important concern about the use is whether you've been tested for the presence of transmitted drug resistance. Since about 10% of newly diagnosed HIV+ persons in US cities have evidence of transmitted resistance, and the most commonly observed resistance pattern in NNRTI (efavirenz) resistance, you'd not want to start on a regimen that you're already resistant to. Because of these observations, the DHHS now recommends resistance testing for all treatment naive HIV+ persons.

As for the side effects of the medications, fat loss or lipoatrophy is not associated with the regimen (though always remember that some patients can experience lipo, even with the "best" tolerated regimens).

Lastly, kidney function should be evaluated prior to (and after) starting tenofovir, since the medication rarely can cause kidney injury (mostly in patients with pre-existing kidney dysfunction).

Good luck, let us know how your medications go for you. BY

Shall I start medication now?

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