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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Leg and arm pain
Jul 8, 2005

I was recently diagnosed with AIDS in May ...CD4 143 Viral Load 62,300. I was placed on Epzicom, Sustiva, and Bactrim. After a month my CD4 has almost doubled to 278 and viral load 6000...I have had none of the listed side effects for either drug , but lately I have been experiecing a throbbing pain in my right leg and arm ...they ache all the time and my face twitches. I was wondering if this could be the beginnings of neuropathy ...I'm not sure what it is or why its happening. Any help you give would be greatly appreciated.

Response from Dr. Conway

It may or may not relate to HIV or your medications. It is certainly not the usual pattern for neuropathy. The pain may be coming from your muscles and/or joints. This type of thing, if it is a side effect of medication, may relate to any of the nucleoside drugs, more likely the abacavir part of the Epzicom than the lamivudine. It may pass over time. I would go see the doctor to have some blood tests done to make sure that your electrolyte levels are OK, as well as a couple of other things that may relate to toxicity of the drugs to your muscles (CK and blood lactate levels). If everything checks out, you may then wish to try mild pain killers (such as Advil) and see how it goes.

health issue
thank you very much

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