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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Exercise and fatigue
Feb 13, 2003

Thank you for your answer regarding my sleep medication.

I have another question: My doctor had me work out in the gym to build up muscle mass. After a workout in the past, I'd be extremely fatigued.

I haven't really worked out for a year after being hit by a car, but now, at the end of my physical rehabiltation program, I'm back at the gym.

Once again, about an hour after my workout program (and I'm only bench-pressing 40 lbs.) I feel as if I have had every last drop of energy drained right out of me. My thoughts get confused and I feel that I'm seeing the world through a fog. In my second week at the gym (3x per week), It took several days to recuperate.

I eat breakfast at least an hour before I work out. I drank a protein supplement and ate a small lunch afterward.

Could this be connected to HIV or my HIV medications? I'm at a loss because I'd like to become more physically fit.

My viral load is undetectable. My t-cells are over 500. I had been very ill 8 or 9 years ago, before protease inhibitors. My cocktail is AZT, 3TC and Crixivan.

Any advice would be apprecitated.

Response from Dr. Henry

Some patients describe that form of severe post-exercise fatigue. In the absence of anything obvious (low testosterone, normal thyroid, normal blood sugar, normal electrolytes) then muscle recovery could be impaired by either your HIV or the meds. If you ache all of the time then a myopathy might have to be considered (AZT can cause that). Taking supplements that may protect against mitochondrial damage might be considered (though there is little good data on that-some patients have told me it can help). Jon Kaiser's book Healing HIV or the website are sources of information about that type of supplement. KH

muscle or fat
Switching times of taking Sustiva

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