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Lipodystrophy and WastingLipodystrophy and Wasting
           
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Weight loss of over 50 pounds in one year
Oct 28, 1999

My brother is HIV positive and has been for seven years. In the past year he has experienced a significant weight loss of over 50 pounds, or one third of his body weight. He sleeps a significant amount of the time (probably 14 hours or more each day) and has sweats each night. He is a smoker and has a horrible cough. He has not been seen by a physician for any of the above other than the initial diagnosis. Does this mean his HIV status has progressed to AIDS? Thank you from a concerned sister.

Response from Dr. Dieterich

Dear Sister, The official definition of AIDS would be met by a weight loss of over 10% of body weight, so in this case it sounds like your brother would qualify. He needs good medical care NOW! He also needs to stop smoking and start eating.I hope you or someone can persuade him to get help. Help is very effective now. If he gets treatment, there is a lot of hope. Good Luck! Douglas T. Dieterich, M.D.


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