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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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HIV meds and possible sun reaction?
Jun 13, 2005

I've been taking Sustiva and Combivir for nine months with few problems, the whole time VL undetec. CD4 275-300, percent from 12% to 14%, lipid profile normal, testosterone normal,. My problem is how I feel, pretty well in the morning when I wake up and okay during the early day but as soon as the sun is shinning bright I get very sick feeling. All afternoon and into the early evening I feel almost like I have flu, achy joints shoulders and arms, discomfort in the upper chest when breathing, and I feel as though I have a fever yet I never do. In fact my temperature generally runs one to two degrees below normal during the time that I feel sickly. I also get very fatigued during these sunny afternoon hours. I just feel sick all afternoon and evening. A couple hours after the sun goes down I'm feeling better again. Is there a known reaction between Sustiva or Combivir and the Sun that would make me feel sick every day?(I have no rashes)I can't find any info on such a reaction but maybe you guys know something I don't. Thanks so much for your help. I'll be living in a dark room until I can get it figured out.

Response from Dr. Henry

Wow-that is an interesting situation which seems fairly convincing that you are possibly having a UV light type of reaction. I assume you are on no other meds that could trigger that? That degree of hypersensitivity you describe is very unusual. If no other cause could be found, a therapeutic switch to a different HIV regimen (i.e. switch off Sustiva to another drug depending on the options available to you)with observation for 2-4 weeks might be considered. KH

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