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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Oct 26, 2003

5 months ago I was diagnosed with HIV. I have yet to receive any medical attention, though I plan on seeing a doctor next month when my insurance kicks in. Lately I have been noticing some thick, fleshy lumps under my skin. Many of them! One below my rib cage, one on each side of my pelvis, one in each of my shoulder blades. It is making me very paranoid. The question is-should I worry that it is something terrible, or is this a very typical side effect of having HIV? Mind you-I still havn't taken any drugs to fight my HIV.Is this natural? Can I get rid of them?

Response from Dr. Boyle

It's tough to say what those are without seeing/feeling them, and even then you may need a biopsy to confirm the initial suspicion. They sound relatively benign, and perhaps are lipomas or lymph nodes (although you mention some atypical locations for those), but they may be something more serious and you need to see a doctor and have a physical examination as soon as possible. Once you determine what they are, you should be able to get rid of them with appropriate treatment.

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