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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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PEP-associated rash
Nov 24, 2010

I am on day 12 of PEP (Combivir & Aluvia) for occupational exposure (Africa). The nausea and vomiting have subsided but now I have a very itchy rash developing. I woke up with urticarial hives on my chin, my cheeks became puffy and upper lip started tingling. I took chlorpheniramine which worked very well and this morning things were almost normal. This afternoon, my arms and legs started to itch, and hives are appearing, including on my face again. I have no oral/mucosal lesions, no blisters etc.

I'm freaking out a bit here. Should I stop the PEP (both or just one?) Is this early Steven-Johnson Syndrome. Can I manage this with antihistamines alone? Any suggestions would be very welcome. DG

Response from Dr. Henry

Steven-Johnson syndrome was be very rare with Aluva (lopinavir/ritonavir)+ Combivir so in most cases would treat through the rash with symptomatic treatment. Recommend monitoring by the prescribing MD or at HIV savvy clinic. KH

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