|CRACK / COCAINE AND ATRIPLA
Jan 4, 2007
I WAS TOLD I HAVE FULL-BLOWN AIDS.I HAVE BEEN SMOKING CRACK FOR THE LAST 10 YEARS 24/7 AND STILL DO. DOES CRACK MULTIPLY THE VIRIS FASTER? I JUST STARTED TAKING ATRIPLA,IS IT SAFE TO SMOKE CRACK WHILE TAKING ATRIPLA?
| Response from Dr. Wohl
My friend, smoking crack 24/7 is just not safe period. There are some data to suggest that cocaine can facilitate HIV replication - especially in the brain, an organ Woody Allen famously noted to be his second favorite organ.
Does this mean your Atripla is doomed to fail? No. It only means that, according to the data available, you are more likely to have trouble controlling your virus and getting your CD4 cells up. This could be due to some effects of the drug on the virus and/or the immune system or because your drug use will interfere with your medical adherence. Those are the stats.
What a great moment to consider getting free from the crack! Starting on a new HIV regimen is a perfect opportunity to get in shape and on track to a long life. Remember Wohl's Rule for Successful Living with HIV: judge all you consider putting in your body based on whether it/he/she helps or hurts in your efforts to live long enough to see a cure for HIV. If it fails, keep it out.
Now, let's see, crack? Causes constriction of heart arteries that can lead to premature heart attacks, reduces appetite, increases risk of unprotected sex, probably not good for the lungs, may be gasoline on the HIV fire. I think crack fails.
If you can't stop on your own, NA or other groups can help. You are worth it.
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