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Causes of "Buffalo hump"?
Jan 29, 2005

First I want to thank you all for the time and effort you put in towards tempering the lives of those of us with HIV. My question is, which component(s) of the medicinal arsenal used to fight HIV contribute to the "buffalo hump" syndrome, and is it reversible? Also, is the hump comprised of redistributed fat tissue? muscle tissue? other? Thanks again for your eagerly awaited response.

Response from Dr. Henry

Buffalo humps are fat deposits located behind the neck. They were reported to have occurred even prior to the use of potent antiretroviral therapy and have not been linked exclusively to any particular HIV medication. Certain HIV meds appear to be associated perhaps more often than others but the cause may be multifactorial (age, sex, race, HIV status can play a role). Switching off possibly contributing medications (such as switching rom D4T to abacavir) might help. Interventions such as growth hormone, diabetic drugs, exercise/diet, testosterone--all are being evaluated for their safety and effectivenss. KH



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