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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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just started and covered in pin point rash
Sep 21, 2009

43 years old. Diagnosed in 2007. Since 2008 have been having allergic reactions requiring antihistamine every two or three days. Last 6 months have had 3 serious bouts of oral thrush and herpes. anal warts materialised about six months ago. September 2009 my VL was 15,000, CD4, 480 with 18%.

My doctor said that combination was a bit unusual and given the history of infections put me on Truvada and Stocrin

Mild side affects like bizarre dreams and tiredness which are diminishing. Been on meds for about 10 days, feeling fine overall until today.

To day most of my body is covered in a rash, red with little red pinpoints. Body trunk, legs and arms. mush worse than the previous 12 months.

Do u think this is a med reaction? Would you agree with the decision to start meds? could something else be causing this body rash? Been to allergy drs and they just give pills. How long to leave it before asking for a change in meds?


Response from Dr. Henry

Starting HIV medications with your medical history seems very reasonable. Efavirenz (Stocrine or Sustiva) often causes a rash as you describe during the first 1-2 weeks. With your rash history you may be even more prone to a drug rash than the typical patients. Most patients can continue their efavirenz with careful observation and symptom management. You need to inform your HIV specialist so he/she can monitor how you are doing. If the rash worsens then a switch from efavirenz to an alternative medication would be considered (such as a boosted protease inhibitor or raltegravir if latter is available where you live). Stopping your HIV meds can put at risk for drug resistance so that has to be handled carefully and is a less attractive option versus treating through the skin problems or switching meds. KH

ART and Neuropathy

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