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Dave R.

HIV, Neuropathy and More: Avoiding Becoming a Nervous Wreck


The Opioid Solution and HIV: From the Frying Pan Into the Fire
February 1, 2013

A nightmare for some and a godsend for others, some people become addicted to opioids because opioids have become their recreational drug of choice, while others become addicted because their pain symptoms are so severe that they have no choice. Either way, a problem has arisen which threatens social stability in whole communities, especially in North America, and makes authorities unsure which way to turn.

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Neuropathy and HIV: A Progress Report
January 10, 2013

With over 100 possible causes and over 100 possible forms, neuropathy is nerve damage that affects roughly 30% of people living with HIV. If you're really unlucky, you may also be diabetic, or have also been treated for cancer, or are a heavy drinker, in which case your chances of suffering from nerve damage unfortunately become exponentially greater.

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Battle Front Angels: HIV/AIDS Heroines of the '80s and '90s
November 15, 2012

Give or take a year or two and depending on your personal history, we've been living and dying with HIV and AIDS for 30 years. Every year on World AIDS Day, we remember those who fell. However, in this morally topsy-turvy world, we don't always remember those who picked up our men, wiped their arses and their tears and unselfishly gave help, humanity and dignity during what for many were last weeks and months. We damn well should because without the thousands across the world who gave their time when nobody else would, a lot fewer of us would be around to talk about it today.

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Crime and Punishment: The U.S. and Canadian Contexts of an International HIV Disclosure Dilemma
October 25, 2012

As far as the United States and Canada are concerned, the HIV criminalization cases there have been well documented; leading to various degrees of outrage from LGBT and HIV groups alike. Probably the best known is the homeless man who was given thirty five years for spitting at a police officer in 2008, with his saliva being declared a "deadly weapon." This in spite of the fact that nobody has ever proved that saliva is a medium for transmitting HIV and the fact that the officer didn't contract HIV. This case was highlighted in the same year by South African judge, Edwin Cameron, in a speech about criminal transmission at the international AIDS conference of 2008.

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Crime and Punishment: An International HIV Disclosure Dilemma
October 25, 2012

There are times when many people outside the United States and Canada experience National Enquirer levels of disbelief at what's goes on in parts of North America in the field of sexual behavior and politics. The current criminalization of people with HIV who fail to tell their partners of their status is just such a moment in time. The sex may be safe and the viral load may be undetectable but you can still be charged with using your body and your virus as a murder or assault weapon, if you don't pre-warn that you're living with HIV.

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Truvada: Troubles Ahead?
October 5, 2012

Sometimes a sort of HIV-related sixth sense kicks in and you get that feeling in your water that the latest advance regarding prevention and treatment just doesn't ring true. Do you feel that occasionally? This story about Truvada, being used as a prevention tool, just gives me the chills. It's as if they just haven't taken into account the foibles of human nature when it comes to doing what you're supposed to do.

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Self-Protection Against Cyber Haters and Other Bullies
September 16, 2012

I think many people react quite understandably and sensibly to cyber hate mail by trying to show the bully up as immature and antisocial. However, if the bully thinks he or she has been seen through, that serves to inflame their hatred in a sort of reverse psychology and the situation can become worse. This occasionally leads to what's known as cyber stalking. This most often applies to public figures and celebrities but many HIV-positive people have been the victims of hate campaigns and continued pestering. The bully can apparently find ways to recruit others to his/her cause and uses technology to track the victim's every Internet movement. This can be very alarming, especially if you feel you're being watched at all times -- a classic symptom of being stalked. Upsetting cases have led to exposure in the victim's work environment, as rumors and half truths are spread amongst unwitting colleagues at work. Once in the open, as we all know, Pandora's Box can never be closed. In the end, no reaction at all to the original tweet or comment may be the safest option, however angry or upset you may feel.

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140 Ways to Hate ... Just One to Despair
September 16, 2012

One of the few advantages of getting old is knowing that you really don't have to put up with other people's crap anymore. That said, the first hate mail that hit my inbox shocked me more than I expected. I almost gave up blogging there and then; the hurt was both unexpected and unjust and I had to take several breaths and remind myself that this happens millions of times a day across the world. Then I wondered why people feel the need to vent their hatred on the Internet and what could be done about it.

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Dem Bones, Dem Bones, Dem Dry Bones
August 31, 2012

You know whatever they say about 50 being the new 40 and 60 being the new 50, well that's all fine and dandy for the super-fit, senior gym bunny, but if you're HIV positive it can be a very different matter, or at least in my case! From my point of view, 50 was the new 60 and 60 was the new 70 and now every new birthday seems to increase in dog years.

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See Also
Neurological Complications of AIDS Fact Sheet
More on Neuropathy

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HIV, Neuropathy and More: Avoiding Becoming a Nervous Wreck


Dave R.

Dave R.

English but living since 1986 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. HIV+ since 2004 and a neuropathy patient since 2007. I've seen quite a bit, done quite a bit and bought quite a few t-shirts if you know what I mean; but all that baggage makes me what I am today: a better person I believe, despite it all.

Arriving on TheBody.com, originally, was the end result of getting neuropathy as a side effect of the medication, or the virus, or both. I found it such a vague disease and discovered very little information that wasn't commercially tinged, or scientifically impenetrable, so I decided to create a daily Blog and a website where practical information, hints, tips and experiences for patients could be gathered together in one place.

However, I was also given the chance to write about other aspects of living with HIV and have now contributed more articles about those than about neuropathy. That said, neuropathy remains my 'core subject' although one which unfortunately dominates both my life and that of many other HIV-positive people.

I'm not a doctor or qualified medical expert, just someone with neuropathy and HIV who has spent the last few years researching the illness and trying to create information sources for people who want to know more.

I also have my own personal website and write for PositiveLite.com.


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The opinions expressed by TheBody.com's bloggers are entirely their own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of TheBody.com itself.

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