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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Feb 9, 2007

I am current treating pink eye, a.k.a. conjunctivitis. I'm using TobraDex, a combination of Tobramycin and Dexamehasone. The HIV regimen I'm on is ATRIPLA. I noticed that before the diagnosis of pink-eye, the HIV treatment had caused a dryness and redness, and swelling of veins in the sides of the eyes. I found that the dexamehtasone component of the eye drops greatly reduced this, to the point where my eyes are as white now as they were before I started HIV treatment. I would suggest to the medical field that you look into some kind of dexamethasone treatment for healthy prognosis on the eyes of HIV patients. I suggest you talk to your colleagues about this and get back to me. Thanks.

Response from Dr. Henry

Use of corticosteroid eye drops can be helpful for some types of eye/conjuncitiva irritation. Chronic or indiscriminate use of steroid eye drops can cause serious eye problems such as trigger glaucoma or cataract formation as well as irrirating symptoms such as burning or worsen dry eyes or conjunctivitis. The vase majority of patients taking antiretrovirals including Atripla do not experience eye problems from their HIV meds. When I see patients with eye problems I have a low threshold for seeking help from my colleagues in ophthalmology. KH

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