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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Jun 17, 2009

I've noticed, quite by accident, that smoking marijuana greatly reduces the side effects associated with my meds. Is this common with other HIVers? I casually mentioned this to my doctor and even inquired about obtaining it for "medicinal" purposes..that way it would be legal for me to have it and my side effects would be controlled.She wasn't sure that it was indicated for medicinal purposes in HIV patients and dismissed the topic. I want to ask you if it is indeed indicated in HIV disease, and if so, what channels do take? I am in Canada, and the rules may be different that those in the USA....But, I'd like to talk to my doctor again about it, but would like to have some facts and more information to take with me..... appreciate you help...

Response from Dr. Henry

Marijuana use often seems to improve appetite and decrease nausea associated with a variety of HIV regimens. In the US Marinol is approved for HIV-related wasting and nausea but is very expensive (real thing is cheaper but illegal!). Most HIV docs are knowledgeable about marijuana in their patients and its pluses and minuses. KH

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