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Follow up (Any Hope, 5/9/11)
Jul 6, 2011

Hi Nelson. You had asked me to follow up on my post dated May 9, 2011 (Any Hope). My doctor has finally taken me off of the Didanosine and has replaced it with Kaletra. The Geno/Phenotype and Tropism testing you suggested could not be done due to my undetectable status (the lab could not amplify the virus enough), so we are just hoping that the virus is sensitive to the Kaletra. I have to test again for VL and CD4's in one month to see if the Kaletra is working.

So my current cocktail is Kaletra, Isentress and Viread. No GI problems as of this time with the Kaletra. Two questions: 1). Now that I am off of the Didanosine, will the mitochondrial damage reverse? I am hoping to return to the testosterone therapy once again now that the Didanosine is no longer in use and mitochondrial function returns. 2). I know PI's are notorious for weight gain.....how is Kaletra in that department? One of the worse for weight gain or not too bad? If weight gain is a problem with Kaletra I am hoping that the testosterone therapy will be an offset. Thank you for your help....

Response from Mr. Vergel

Thanks for the update. I am glad you got off DDI

Yes, mitochondrial DNA levels in fat and muscle cells tend to improve after removal of an offending agent like DDI. However, most of us do not get back to what the mitochondrial DNA levels that we would have if we were HIV negative. HIV itself has a detrimental effect on mitochondrial function, but this problem is worsened by DDI, AZT and D4T.

Yes, watch your weight now. Exercise 4 times a week for an hour. Follow the instructions given in these two articles here at thebody:

Ten Tips for Weight Loss

Nelson's Top 10 Tricks for Fat Loss

Also watch your lipids and make sure that your LDL and triglycerides are withing normal ranges.

Good luck and let us know how things go for you after a few months.

Nelson Vergel



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