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HIV Drug ResistanceHIV Drug Resistance
          
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Resistant to everything available...now what?
Nov 22, 2002

I have built up resistance to every medication currently available...what can i do to prolong my immune system while some of the latest (fuzeon or atazanavir) become available...or all around...waht can i do?

Response from Dr. Little

The decision about what to do while awaiting newer drugs depends a bit upon your CD4 cell count and viral load. If your CD4 cell count is low (i.e. less than 50), I would generally favor staying on some therapy - even if it is only partially successful. There is good data to suggest that even nonsuppressive therapy is better than no therapy among subjects with low CD4 cell counts. If your CD4 cell count is high (i.e. greater than 300), you may want to take a treatment holiday and follow your CD4 cell count closely while awaiting new treatment options. Then there is the grey zone in the middle (CD4 50-300) - and I would generally look at the viral load in these cases. If the viral load is high (i.e. greater than 50,000), I would favor continued therapy. Regarding what else you can do - I would look up your nearest clinical research site or university clinic and try to find out if you qualify for any studies which may include access to some of the drugs currently in development. Even if you do not qualify now - you may in the future. Good luck.


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