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hyperpigmentation/skin discoloration
Jul 12, 2006

Hi Doc, I am a 44 year old black man, and I've just started taking meds in April 2006. Initially I was on Epizicom and Sustiva, but had a severe reaction within 10 days and had to stop. Now I'm taking Combivir and Lexiva, and my viral load is undectable. I've noticed,however, that my skin is getting considerably darker. Do you know which med is causing it, and can I switch to another one? My liver, kidneys, heart, lungs, cholesterol, etc. are all fine.

Any suggestions? Thanks in advance for your help.

Response from Dr. Henry

In some black patients AZT (in the Combivir) can cause some darkening in pigment so I would guess the AZT may be involved. Switching to tenofovir (or abacavir if your reaction was not due to abacavir hypersensitivity) might be worth considering. Also seeing a dermatologist sometimes is helpful to assist in a more specific diagnosis and help with a treatment plan. KH

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