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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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tingling in fingers and toes with red splotches
May 19, 2010

Hello, I have been HIV+ for ~11-12 years and I have taken everything from AZT to now taking Truvada, Reyataz and Norvir and everything in between. A couple weeks ago I started getting tingling in my fingertips. The next day, it also appeared in my toes. They both progressively became worse and turned into painful tingling. It was difficult for me to write with a pen and it felt like sharp, stabbing pain just from running my hands under lukewarm water. It was also difficult to walk. The most bizarre symptom were red splotches on my fingers and toes a couple days after this all started. All of this lasted for about a week. The tingling slowly went away and the red splotches slowly faded from red to brown. Since then, I still get occasional tingling in my hands, but nothing as severe as it was. I do not have diabetes, I've just taken all kinds of HIV meds that are under the sun (so it seems). Any idea?

Thanks, Stephanie

Response from Dr. Henry

The symptoms you describe would be unusual to be standard HIV drug related peripheral neuropathy due to distribution and the fact that the symptoms improved yet meds were continued. Vascular spasm (Raynauds syndrome like) and other conditions would need to be considered as would a drug interaction of some sort depending on what else you are taking. A medical evaluation with particular attention to neurologic and vascular status is recommended to investigate further. Those symptoms are not common with your HIV regimen but can occur so that remains a possibility. KH

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