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Gall stones and Reyataz
Oct 19, 2006

I find it very coincidental that a lot fo people who are taking Reyataz are also coming up with weird enzyme levels in their liver and getting Gall stones. Is it just me or is there a serious connection to Reyataz and Gall stones. How can I remove them with out surgery?

Response from Dr. Daar

It is a well known side effect of atazanavir (Reyataz) to increase bilirubin levels. This is not a dangerous complication of therapy and is completely reversible. The only time most providers will do anything about this condition is if the patient complains of having yellow eyes, at which time therapy can be stopped and the problem goes away.

I am not aware of this medication being associated with development of gall stones. I suspect what might happen is that people experience an increase in their bilirubin on this therapy which leads to further studies such as an ultrasound, at which time they are found to have gall stones that were otherwise without symptoms. This does not mean that the gall stones were caused by the medications.

I would encourage you and others to discuss with their provider this and other complications of therapy and how to best manage them if or when they occur. With regards to removing gall stones I would refer you to your provider and/or gastroenterology or surgery consultants as to whether the gall stones need to be removed at all, and if so what options are available.

Best, Eric

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