Feb 6, 2002
I am a 38 year old man and have been HIV+ for 7 years and on 3 ditterent cocktails during that time. Currently, I am on Sustiva, Zerit, Kaletra, and the experimental drug T-20. I have been on this regime for about 9 months with great success - VL undetectable and t-cells around 350. So far so good, right? Since being on this new regime, I have noticed my sex drive diminishing - no drive and no morning erections. I was on a drug holiday before the current regime and had NO problems getting or maintaining an erection. 3 months ago, I started dating someone who I am very attracted to, both physically and mentally. Each time we have sex, I have problems getting and maintaing my erection - it's like riding the roller coaster to the top of the first big hill...then all of a sudden, the car falls backward without ever reaching the top! My MD tested my testosterone levels they were about 300, with the normal range being 400 and above. I have been on Androgel for about a week and a half now and I get little tingles, but still, the coaster never makes it to the top of the hill. I exercise and eat well. I'm getting extremely frustrated. Is this a function of the meds I'm on? Are there alternatives? Are there supplements I can take? Am I just getting old? What can I do? I want to enjoy sex and I want to give pleasure to my partner, but this is becoming a problem - actually, it's a problem for me....he is very understanding and comforting and for that, I love him very much. Please help - any advice would be appreciated!
Response from Dr. Henry
You might have to give the testosterone longer to work. In the absence of untreated hormonal problems then either a medication side effect, psychologic issues, or neuropathy of some sort explain most of the difficulties that arise with sexual function. Often low dose Viagra can help (careful since on Kaletra--try 25 mg doses (1/2 of a 50mg tablet) cautiously. For refractory cases an evaluatio by a urologist or a sex therapist may help. KH
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