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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Oct 17, 2001

Dear Dr. Boyle: My current regimen are epivir,ziagen,and sustiva. I drink alcohol on a regular basis and would consider myself an alcoholic and sometimes indulge in recreational drugs(cocaine). I do take my medication seriously. Does the medicine works when you consume alcohol? What are the side effects? I will get into rehab program soon but like to know. John

Response from Dr. Boyle

The medications can still work, even if you drink alcohol heavily, but alcohol abuse is likely to lead to missed or late doses and this may cause problems. Also, since alcohol is a toxin that can injure many organs of your body, this may affect the way the drugs are metabolized or distributed, and this also has the potential to cause problems. A rehab program is a good idea...

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