|When to Switch Meds?
Feb 18, 2009
Sir, I have been on the regimen of Combivir and Kaletra for several years. My viral load is undetectable and T-Cell count normal and am otherwise healthy. A year ago I started experiencing muscle pain and weakness in my legs, and, weight loss. This I brought to he attention of my Doctor. I was sent for an MRI which was normal. I was then referred to a nuerologist. All nerve tests reults were normal. I then had a Muscle Biopsy, which again was normal. Finally I was taken off the Combivir/Kaletra regimen and my condition improved. Since then I have learned that my ailments were consistent with the Side Effects of Combivir. Should the Meds switch been the first action taken before the other tests?
| Response from Dr. Henry
Generally if a patient develops myopathy or other condition possibly due to AZT (one of components of Combivir) then a switch to an alterantive drug (often nevirapine or abacavir) would be considered in order to preserve the gains made on HIV treatment. Since you are now off meds I would consider restarting a new regimen without AZT and observe whether the muscle difficulties return. KH
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