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can i take steroids with ART?

Aug 13, 2008

Dear Dr., Some background info. before asking the question; partner diagnosed HIV+ 5 weeks ago after presenting with PCP (CD4 COUNT IN SINGLE FIGURES(!!) AND vl LOAD OF 50,000). Treatment for PCP successful(3 weeks duration). Started septrin prophylaxis(2 weeks ago )-960mg per day and on ART (truvada and sustiva ).No major side effects as yet.

Question is; is( a small dose of) prednisolone steroid safe to take with sustiva and truvada. He would like to take it for his body rash which he has on and off for months now. He has tried creams etc but in the past the corticosteroid(pred.) worked best....and he wants to use it again now but he is a little unsure of whether it is OK to use pred. now in light of his ART drugs. Many thanks for any observations. Dr. Benjamin has kindly answered questions for us before(4 July). We live in the UK.

Response from Dr. Young

Hello and thanks for your post from the UK.

Yes, provided that there's a medical need, there's no reason why low-dose corticosteroids (like prednisolone) couldn't be taken, especially since your partner's already on HIV medications.

Best of health you both of you,


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