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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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weight gain
Oct 27, 2009

I was diagnosed in 1995. Baseline labs cd4 under 50, vl 1.5 million. Have been on many regimens, although I reacted very quickly to meds. Within 6 weeks of starting meds my cd4 went up to the 600's and vl went under 20,000. Currently, cd4 is 1416 at 42% vl is <50. Current meds, isentress, prevista, truvada and a norvir booster. Since starting this regimen, I have gained 30 pounds. Granted, I had gained weight on other meds but this is the largest increase. My physical activity is the same. I am older at 47, but I am only 5 feet tall at 151 pounds. Pretty soon I wont have to walk, I'l be able to roll.

Is it the meds? I've done two STI's and did well and started meds again almost immediatly after we saw a drop in cd4's and a rise in vl. Would this be another option for me?

My doc doesn't think so, he is afraid I wont reconstitute again.

I'm sick of being fat!

Response from Dr. Henry

Stopping treatment is not recommended because of risk for a wide range of serious health problems (many not AIDS). An assessment by a nutritionist is recommended. Genetics can play a role-what do similarly aged relatives look like?? That particular regimen has not generally been linked to such significant weight gain but it is seen occasionally so there is person to person variation. I would have little confidence that a different regimen would solve the problem. Looking for hormone problems (thyroid, testosterone) may also be worthwhile if not done already. KH

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