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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Mosquito bites
Sep 26, 2007

I'm HIV+ on the Truvada/Reyataz/Norvir combo. Recently when bitten by mosquitos I suffer from extra large inflamation, extreme itching and bumps that last for a week or more, and ache in the area of the bite. Used to be a mosquito bite would heal quickly (day or two), but now they linger and are quite uncomfortable and bothersome especially if in a visible area. I get giant bumps that are angry red. Is this in any way related to my HIV and/or my drug regimin? Is this something to be concerned about?

Response from Dr. Henry

I have had numerous HIV+ patients over the years develop exaggerated responses to insect bites (mosquitos=the state bird in Minnesota in the summer). The immune dysregulation in HIV+ patients (often with high gamma globulin levels) may contribute to the problem with immune reconstitution from effective HIV therapy adding further to the reaction in some patients. I haven't observed any further serious sequelae develop among my patients with that problem other than persistent hypersensitivity to insect bites with occasional bacterial superinfection from a highly reactive bite site. KH

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