May 26, 2006
dI am a very long term survivor (over 20 yrs)who started taking AZT just before it came out on the open market and got off it several years ago. My viral load has always been undetectable. In 2004 I started getting severe neck pain and a large collection of fat around my neck. I was diognosed with Lipodystrophy from AZT. I've had two very expencive surgery's and a lot of pain.
I am very greatful that I am still alive and asymtomatic. My partner died of GRID in 1988.
In my surgon's office waiting room, I've had several conversations with other people who are going through similar situations. Talk of law suits against the maker of AZT has come up, and at least one man I spoke with has filled a suit in the last three months.
This is clearly a moral issue in this all to ready to sue society. Have you thought about this issue and will you kindly please comment reguarding your personal feelings about hardship caused by these EXPERIMENTAL DRUGS we are taking. Thank you.
| Response from Dr. Henry
One concern is that a lawsuit against a drug company for a long term side effect would likely decrease interest on behalf of drug manufacturers to develop new treatment and get them to market to help out patients in need. Increase in fat around the neck in HIV + persons has not been specifically linked to AZT and was reported prior to use of effective HIV therapy. Increasing age, time with HIV, and a lower CD4 count nadir are factors that have been linked to fat abnormalities yet are not related to specific therapies. The topic is very complicated and is getting more of the attention it deserves these days. AZT has been linked more to fat loss than fat gain.
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