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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Why are there still side effects?
Nov 14, 2006

I'm curious as to why drugs continue to be pushed out to the HIV infected population that have so many toxic side effects? Ok, so I get it that in the early days there was no treatment, and something was better than nothing.... but why now are there a) new drugs released that carry these same toxins and b)no changes in the toxic medications already on the market to make them tolerable? It seems those with HIV might benefit much more from less toxic drugs presently available rather than developing and releasing new toxic crap on the population.

Response from Dr. Henry

It is my experience that the regimens we are currently using are less toxic, better tolerated, and more effective than regimens we used previously. By a year into therapy the vast majority of patients in our practice (at a county hospital) report that they are tolerating their drugs well. For new drugs to enter into the mix for patients who are doing well they have to be better tolerated/safer so the bar keeps getting raised. Since every patient is different with a unique genetic/immune background what fits for one patient may not be good for another so often switches are made to find the best fit for a given patient. KH

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