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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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What if anything can be done about swollen parotid glands?
Dec 9, 2004

A friend of mine has horribly swollen parotid glands that are very disfiguring. The only thing I have heard to help this is low dose radiation treatments. Do you know anything else people are having success treating this with? Massage or anti-inflammatories,having them drained maybe?

Response from Dr. Conway

Generally speaking, the cause of the enlargement of the parotid glands is an infiltration of lymphocytes. One of the first things might be to make sure that is what this is, since there are other causes of parotid enlargement, such as infection, that require a specific treatment.

If this turns out to be HIV-related cellular infiltration, going on HAART can often help. The anti-inflammatories can help with any pain that is occurring but is unlikely to make the swelling improve. I am not sure if there is a role for massage. If it is still causing problems on long-term HAART, radiation therapy (very low dose, actually) may end up making a big difference.

Thank Your Dr. Conway
Heartfelt thank you to all our experts!!!!

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