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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Raised Lipid levels & Cholesterol
Jul 1, 2011

I was diagnosed in 2000 and put immediately onto meds. Three years ago I was put on Atripla. For the past eleven years I have tolerated all my meds with no side effects. I have been Viral Load has been undetectable since 2001 and my CD4 count remains on or around 400. My difficulty at the moment is trying to manage my hypertension and raised lipid levels and cholesterol. I will be seeing my doctor in x2 months but would be grateful for your opinion as to how this issue might be best tackled. Regards, Johann.

Response from Dr. Henry

Genetics (family history), aging, diet, exercise (lifestyle issues), fat distribution, HIV, use of other drugs (prescription or over the count), concurrent health problems, and HIV drugs all can be factors regarding lipid levels (and in some cases impact blood pressure readings). Determination of levels for good cholesterol (HDL), bad cholesterol (LDL), triglycerides, glucose status, and through health/life style assessment are important to best develop a management plan. Lifestyle changes are often the first line of treatment (eating healthy, exercise more, lose weight if possible). Assessment of overall cardiovascular risk (ie Framingham check) is important to understand what is the associated risk for heart disease and set priorities. KH

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