|Need help for a dear friend
Jun 11, 2001
My friend has a strain of hiv that is resistant to a medicine called sustiva, and some resistance to some type of inhibitor.
The problem is she is talking about ending her life or just stop trying any other drugs. I want to help her but she won't tell me much about her disease.
My questions are:
Does she possibly have some rare strain and therefore limited choices for medication?
What would cause this resistance?
Can you tell from what I've told you what strain she has?
I want to help, but don't have enough knowledge to look into ways to help her. I'm afraid if I don't do something she will just give up. Can you offer me any info????
Response from Dr. Little
The presence of resistance to a medication such as sustiva comes about when someone takes this medication (or occasionally one of the drugs in the same family of drugs) and the virus develops the ability to reproduce EVEN while the drug is still faithfully being taken. This generally occurs when the level of virus is not completely controlled (or suppressed) with a certain regimen (that contains the drug in question) and then some of the ongoing viral replication may give rise to a strain that is even better able to reproduce in the presence of the drug. This continues until ultimately, a drug resistant variant or strain becomes the predominant strain in the body. Typically, for people with drug resistant strains of the virus there ARE other treatment options - unless this is the latest in a long series of drug resistance mutations. If your friend has never taken HIV treatment, then the most likely explanation is that someone who was infected with a virus resistant to sustiva, passed this virus on to your friend (explaining how someone who has never taken therapy can possibly be resistant to one or more drugs). If your friend has taken HIV therapy, then I would guess that at some point she took sustiva or one of its related class of drugs and developed drug resistance as I described above. Without more information, I can only suggest that she discuss her test results with a physician with experience in the field of HIV drug resistance and see if alternative (often very effective) treatment recommendations can be devised. Unfortunately, resistance to sustiva is not uncommon - the bigger question is - is this the only drug to which she has detectable resistance??
SUBTYPE O AND N HIV
drugged in Thai x 2
- Is Bruising Easily A Sign Of Hiv?
- Can You Be Hiv Negative And Have Kaposi's Sarcoma?
- Why Do I Always Have Bacterial Vaginosis?
- When They Do The Hiv Blood Test Do They Also Check For Herpes?
- What Would Happen If You Had Sex With Someone That Had Genital Warts?
- What Causes Genital Warts To Come Back?
This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.
Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither TheBody.com nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.