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Can anti-biotic drugs complicate/interfere with HIV medication?

Nov 29, 2009

Dear Dr,

I have been on HIV medication (Sustiva/Kivexa) for three years with success. I am generally fit and healthy although recently experienced tenderness and swelling in one testicle. After getting this checked out, my doctor prescribed Doxycycline antibiotics followed by a penecillin injection as a precaution. Please can you tell me if antibiotics (such as Doxycycline) can interfere/cause complications with my daily HIV meds? I ask because I am experiencing slight bloatedness and slight tenderness in the lower abdomen area since taking the antibiotics combined with my HIV meds. Thank you for being a wonderful resource!

A in London

Response from Dr. McGowan

Hello A in London Thank you for your question and your kind words about the website. There are no drug-drug interactions between doxycycline or penicillin and the HIV medications you are taking. The side effects you may be experiencing may be from the doxycycline which can occur regardless of the anti HIV medications you are taking. Doxycycline can sometimes cause nausea, heartburn, indigestion and loss of appetite. If your symptoms become severe (persistent nausea, persistent diarrhea or vomiting) you should speak with your doctor. But be rest assured your HIV medications are not being effected by the antibiotics your are taking or vice versa. Thanks Joe

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