Taking AZT out of combo
Jun 29, 2003
I am on Trizivir and Sustiva. I am noticing facial wasting, my hemoglogin is also low and I feel tired most of the time. I have a CD4 count of 260 (which has been increasing) and an undectable viral load. Would it be possible to take AZT out and just stay on ABC,3TC and Sustiva or may that be a too weak of a combination? Viread is not yet available where I am.
Response from Dr. Conway
In a word, yes. The combination of Sustiva with two nucleoside analogues has produced excellent long-term virolgic suppression and immunologic recovery in a wide variety of settings.
It is correct to say that, among the drugs you are now on, the likeliest one to cause a low hemoglobin is the AZT. However, it would be important for you and your doctor to consider other causes of why your hemoglobin is low while you are making a decision to stop your AZT. With respect to your facial wasting, the situation is much less clear. It can be linked to the use of any drug, and you should monitor the situation very closely as you stop the AZT to see if it stabilizes, or if you should consider additional steps to address it.
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