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MAC, mycobacterial diseases
Mar 2, 2013

My mom was just diagnosed with MAC. She is from Raleigh-Durham area. She is currently being treated by a doctor in the area. Her first try with using all the three pill regimen was not tolerable. Now he recommended her to start on the R drug first and build to where she will take all three. She is having stomach/nausea/vomiting problems. Is this a common side effect? She is taking a blood thinner, and seems to believe that she should not be taking this. Could this cause her nausea? Any suggestions as to a better way to take the medicine?

Response from Dr. Young

Hi and thanks for posting.

The treatment of Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) usually requires many months of multiple antibiotics. The R drug you refer to is either rifampin or rifabutin. It's not uncommon for patients to experience nausea, especially in the first weeks of treatment.

I am concerned about the potential drug-drug interactions between her R drug and the Coumadin that she's taking for her blood clot.

Make sure that her prescribers are aware that she's taking both medications- at a minimum her blood thinner doses will need to be adjusted.

I do think that the step-wise attempt to resume treatment is reasonable; this should also allow her doctors to figure out which of the medications is the cause of her symptoms.

I hope that helps, BY

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