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HIV and methylprednisolone use
Jan 23, 2013

Is it safe? I have been HIV+ for 21 years and take good care of myself. My CD counts have been in the 500's for a very long time and my VL undetectable until the last visit when it showed a 30. I had back surgery 9 months ago and now am experiencing a "lumbar flareup" with excruciating pain. My surgeon has prescribed celebrex, hydrocodon 5/500 and methylprednisolone 4mg. (6 day regimine) I am on Truvada, Reyataz, Norvir, citalopram and just started Pravastatin this week. My ID Dr. does not like the idea of steroids and has advised against its use. I work full time (and overtime) and would like your opinion on this short regimine of the steroid use. I need to get back to work. If this is not safe is there an alternative to methylprednisolone? Thanks for your opinion.

Response from Dr. Young

Hello and thanks for posting.

The short-term use of corticosteroids (if indicated by medical need) is very acceptable. (For example, it's actually recommended for people with severe PCP and AIDS).

I wouldn't recommend their use without a true need, but seems like "excruciating pain" from known lumbar disease more than meets this criteria.

Hope that helps and wish you well, BY

Should I start PEP treatment?
Increasing cd4 count with suppressed viral load

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