July 19, 2011
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LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS


 If We're Both Poz, Why Should We Keep Using Condoms?
My partner and I are both HIV positive and we're strictly monogamous. Can we get rid of the latex suit when we have sex? We've heard about superinfection, but is there any proof it really exists? Any other things we should take into consideration?

Robert J. Frascino, M.D., responds in the "Safe Sex and HIV Prevention" forum


 Could Light Drinking Bring Heavy Consequences for HIVers?
I don't take HIV meds, but my CD4 count is 523. Can I drink alcoholic beverages? What does an HIV-positive person need to consider before drinking?

David Fawcett, Ph.D., L.C.S.W., responds in the "Substance Use and HIV" forum


MIXED-STATUS COUPLES


 How Safe Is Sperm Washing?
I'm HIV positive with a CD4 count of about 700, and I have yet to start taking HIV meds. My wife is HIV negative. We want to start having children. How effective might sperm washing be at keeping my wife HIV negative?

Robert J. Frascino, M.D., responds in the "Fatigue and Anemia" forum


BODY SHAPE CHANGES & HIV/AIDS


 Buttock Wasting: How Can I Sit Comfortably?
If a person experiencing buttock wasting can't pay for implants but still wants to protect his or her butt bones from being bruised, could padded briefs be an affordable alternative? What brands are out there making this product?

Gerald Pierone, M.D., responds in the "Facial Wasting" forum


summertime: a season for hiv retreats!

lodge cliff "It might sound odd to seek out a vacation event just for people with HIV," comments TheBody.com's video blogger Mark S. King. He's participated in HIV retreats and found the experience so rewarding, he compiled a list of several fun options around the U.S. "Joining a group of others living with HIV might be a fun solution if you're looking to make friends with other people living with HIV and build your support network."

Retreats range from carefree holidays off the beaten track to educational weekends in the middle of the biggest U.S. cities. Many retreats are free, low-cost or provide discounts to people in need. Check out Mark's article, as well as TheBody.com's retreat resource page!



HIV/AIDS TREATMENT


 How Can My Doctor Help Me if I'm Out of Approved Treatment Options?
I'm a longtime HIV survivor and I have no options left for a third drug in my HIV med regimen. My viral load is 40,000 and my CD4 count has fallen big-time. Do you have any information to share that could help doctors help patients like me, who've run out of HIV meds to try?

Nelson Vergel responds in the "Nutrition and Exercise" forum


 Can I Take Garlic With My HIV Meds?
I take Sustiva (efavirenz, Stocrin) and Truvada (tenofovir/FTC). A friend told me that drinking a garlic tea -- soaking garlic in hot water for two hours, then drinking it -- could lower my cholesterol. Is there any interaction between garlic and my HIV med regimen?

Keith Henry, M.D., responds in the "Managing Side Effects of HIV Treatment" forum


More Questions About HIV/AIDS Treatment:


OTHER HEALTH ISSUES & HIV/AIDS


 Are There Effective Antidepressants That Don't Cause Sexual Side Effects?
I have a history of depression and obsessive compulsive disorder. I've been on too many antidepressants to count, all with various side effects that I could not tolerate. I experienced sexual dysfunction while taking Zoloft (sertraline), Paxil (paroxetine), Prozac (fluoxetine) and Lexapro (escitalopram). I'm currently on Wellbutrin (bupropion), which is known for not causing sexual side effects, but it makes me more aggressive -- and it's not working to boot. What can I do?

David Fawcett, Ph.D., L.C.S.W., responds in the "Mental Health and HIV" forum


 What Do You Know About Organ Damage and Untreated HIV?
I've been HIV positive for 13 years. My CD4 count is 439 and my viral load is 6,536. I'm still not on HIV meds. Are there some types of organ damage that are likely to occur with my delay?

Nelson Vergel responds in the "Nutrition and Exercise" forum


Connect With Others

I Waited to Get Tested; Now I'm Scared It's Too Late to Ever Be Healthy
(A recent post from the "I Just Tested Positive" board)

I knew I was poz on some level, but put off getting tested because of ignorance on my part. In October I got shingles, April oral thrush. It was actually the thrush that made me get tested (poz, of course). ... I was diagnosed May 2 and got my first labs May 31, only to find out my CD4 count was only 12. Been taking Atripla for 25 days now with a hospital stay for CMV virus. .... What if the meds don't work? ... I don't wanna be that sick again. Has anyone else been in this position? -- chicagodave123

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UNDERSTANDING HIV/AIDS LABS


 Can a Person Have a Low CD4 Count and No Symptoms?
If a person had a CD4 count below 200, would they feel it? Can a person be symptom free with that low a CD4 count?

Robert J. Frascino, M.D., responds in the "Fatigue and Anemia" forum


HIV TRANSMISSION


 ARS 5 Days After Sex With Poz Partner: Is This Possible?
I'm dating a poz guy who's been on medication for past five years with an undetectable viral load. Recently he stopped taking his meds for 12 days without telling me. We had unprotected sex and five days afterward I had a fever, a sore throat, chills, headache and muscle aches. If I am indeed becoming HIV positive, would acute retroviral syndrome (ARS) show up just five days after infection?

Robert J. Frascino, M.D., responds in the "Safe Sex and HIV Prevention" forum



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