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Ruling out Sustiva related depression

Nov 13, 2006

I've been on the Sustiva/Truvada combination for 3 years and have responded wondefully with high T-Cells and non-detectable viral load. However, I have dealt with mild-to-moderate depression since starting the combo. I don't respond well to anti-depressants for a myriad of reasons for example it depletes my sex drive and/or one intensified my Restless Leg Syndrome. My doctor wants to take me off of the Sustvia/Truvada combo temporarily by instantly removing the Sustiva first and phasing out of the Truvada over a three week period. She wants to see if my depression and its symptons lift by removing the Sustiva, which is well known to cause mild depression. My only concern is that the Sustiva/Truvada combo has been a phenomenal combination for me and I don't want to risk resistance by coming off of this this combo. She promises that I can always go back on this if I go off of the regimen by her following her instructions listed above. Is this true to you?

Response from Dr. Horwath

It is a difficult decision and there is no single correct answer unfortunately. If you stop the Sustiva, you may experience an improvement in the depression. The chance of developing resistance is minimized by following your doctor's recommendations.

If your depression improves off of the Sustiva, you will still need to decide on another regimen, which may be associated with other side effects. However, if your depression interferes with your ability to function or enjoy life, then it is obviously worth giving it a try.

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