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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Sex Question
Apr 18, 2008

2 Questions: 1 I am HIV Positive in good health with undetectable viral load 50 am I contagious to others who are not Hiv Positive? also I am having trouble getting an erection ,my blood pressure is a little high can you recomend something. Help!

Response from Dr. Henry

Safe sex (proper use of condoms for example ) is generally still urged for persons who are HIV+ with an undetectable viral load for many reasons including : 1) genital secretions can be disconnected or protected from penetration of some HIV meds; 2) other infections can still be transmitted through unsafe sex; 3) viral blips can occur in both blood and genital secretions so it is tough to be 100% certain that no virus is present even if a recent blood test was negative. Situations where a partner is trying to get pregnant represent a special situation requiring particular expertise and individualization. Sperm washing is often used to further reduce the risk of transmissions in the case of an HIV+ male. Impotence is common in the general population and even more common in HIV+ men often due to a variety of physical and mental/emotional issues that need to be evaluated in order to optimize chances for improvement (referral to a sex therapist often helpful). High blood presssure is a common problem and success with treatment can be challenging. The best treatment depends on a number of factors including kidney status, race, what other drugs you are taking, et cetera since there a large number of meds available with variable success rates depending on the situation. Often a mixture of meds is used to achieve the target blood presssure. Your HIV specialist is the best person to initially assess treatment options and whether a referral is needed. KH

HIV meds and driving
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