Adjusting to Life on HIV Treatment: Tips From Experts
Joel Gallant, M.D.
Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology, Division of Infectious Diseases, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
Taking antiretroviral therapy (ART) isn't as hard as it used to be. Simple, once-daily combinations are now the norm, and we may soon have a number of single-tablet regimens available. Side effects and drug toxicity haven't disappeared completely, but they're no longer inevitable.
Starting ART is sometimes a trial and error process, and drug switches may be necessary before you're on a combination that agrees with you. Before you start, make sure you understand how your meds should be taken, the possible side effects, and how to contact your provider if you have problems.
Making switches is OK, but stopping and restarting therapy can create resistance, so if there's a problem, don't stop treatment: Talk to your provider about managing side effects or switching drugs.
Comment by: Rusty S
Mon., Jul. 28, 2014 at 4:56 pm EDT
Even though you may achieve an undetectable viral load you could sleep with someone who is also HIV and contract a mutated virus that your drugs want effect. Just use protection and don't feel safe just because the person is HIV also. Perhaps after reviewing your history of HIV meds and if neither is on salvage drugs and your genotype of HIV match's it might be ok if you develope a relationship
Comment by: Rita
Wed., Aug. 14, 2013 at 2:10 pm EDT If she loves you it will just take an extra effort on her part, but no telling her is not an option. Shame, feeds this illness like gas to a fire. believe me I can relate. Good luck as see your doctor before anything else. Your local heath dept. has a free test that takes 15 min. you both should be checked. Good luck.
Comment by: loveofgod
Wed., Jun. 12, 2013 at 3:55 pm EDT
i jst got diagnized wit cd4 of 421 not placed on med, wat type of food suppliments can l take to build my immune up apart from natural fruit?
Comment by: Marie
Wed., May. 22, 2013 at 4:43 pm EDT You get better because you haven't completed Gods' plan for your life. You have the opportunity to help so many people HIV positive or not. Don't waste time sulking you have survived over 20 years with this disease. Encourage, teach, help others, be a witness. You have HIV but don't make it just about you Get busy spread the word.
Praying for You.
Comment by: Christopher
(Fort Lauderdale, FL)
Thu., Sep. 1, 2011 at 1:17 pm EDT
Funny, I would have thought you would have include PLWHIV. Who's more of an expert at living with HIV treamtent than us???
And that's just to start. Lotsa different stuff in the Resource Center, from many perspectives. ;-)
Comment by: john
Tue., Sep. 6, 2011 at 1:52 pm EDT reader, your post was exactly what I was hoping for.
Experience from the ones who have to execute it each and every day, who live it not just see it come across in the office.
Comment by: Katende
(Kampala - Uganda)
Mon., Aug. 22, 2011 at 11:26 pm EDT
Apart from socail and moral support from people around you, be awere that this your daily job. yuor arethe master of your life but it matters alot to us and your country . "Remember your daily dose". That day you missed can cause 100day admitted.
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