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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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restart meds worried about lactic acidosis JB
Dec 5, 2000

Dear Docs,

Thanks for your hard work - it really helps. My doctor took me off all anti-retrovirals (I was on Viramune, Epivir and Zerit) because I was showing symptoms of lactic acidosis. I had previously been on Crixivan instead of Viramune, but was showing signs of kidney toxicity. (My numbers were great - undetectable viral load on the sensitive assay and CD4 cells of 500.) I was subsequently hospitalized for more than six weeks with various infections, and haven't taken any HIV meds since (about 10 weeks now). Now he's thinking of putting me on Viramune, and a combination of Norvir and Crixivan and that's all. What do you think?

Response from Dr. Bartlett

Lactic acidosis may occur as a complication of treatment with nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors. Your doctor has recommended a regimen which avoids drugs in this class, and should be quite potent. At this time we are still learning about how best to restart antiretrovirals after lactic acidosis, and the recommendations to you seem quite sensible.

John A. Bartlett, M.D.

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