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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
           
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numbness
Jul 7, 2010

i am a 33 year old female and am hiv and aids positive six months done the line i started taking medication and a month ago i started feeling numbness in the legs, i cannot feel them at all at times and then it is feels like pins and needles, it feels worse when i sleep and the legs are horizontal and when i sleep with the legs up it is better they seem a bit more sensitive now than before, what is the cause and how can i curb this feeling my doctor tells me there is no medication for it, but to change the drugs ARV

Response from Dr. Henry

Risk for HIV related peripheral neuropathy depends on CD4 count and other factors. Risk for HIV treatment related peripheral neuropathy depends on what specific HIV drugs you are taking. If your are on one of the "D" drugs (ddi, D4T) for example then a switch to an alternative regimen would be the first step if that seems to be the likely cause and other drugs are available. A careful clinical evaluation sometimes with neurology consultation is recommended for starters. There are some variably effective treatments for the symptoms of neuropathy that can be offered in some situations but treatment remains frustrating so avoiding severe cases is high priority. KH



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