February 28, 2012
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LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS


 Is HIV Affecting My Son's Intelligence?
My son is HIV positive and not doing very well at school. Is there a relationship between my son's intelligence and his HIV status?

Benjamin Young, M.D., Ph.D., responds in the "Choosing Your Meds" forum


 How Can I Cope When I've Been Hurt in So Many Ways?
I was just diagnosed with HIV last June and haven't been dealing well with it. I was molested for years as a kid by my stepfather. I went to counseling for the sexual abuse but I still dealt with unsafe behavior patterns. I feel like I'm being punished in some way. I'm so ashamed of being HIV positive that I won't go to any support groups. I feel so cheap and ugly; I want to be loved but I just can't love myself. What can I do?

Rev. Todd A. Brown responds in the "Spiritual Support and HIV" forum


NUTRITION, EXERCISE & HIV/AIDS


 Which Supplements Should I Avoid?
I recently started taking HIV meds. I've also been taking astragalus and sea buckthorn oil, and I'm thinking of starting omega-3 fish oil and lecithin supplements. Do you have any information about which supplements I should take, and which ones I should stay away from?

Nelson Vergel responds in the "Nutrition and Exercise" forum


More Questions About Nutrition, Exercise & HIV/AIDS:


WORKPLACE, INSURANCE & LEGAL CONCERNS


 Can Social Services Share My HIV Status With My Employer?
I was required by ADAP to contact social services. Today I received an email from my former employer; attached was a letter from social services addressed to my former supervisor. The letter had an HIV questionnaire attached. I'd planned on returning to work after recovering from surgery. When I left my former employer I was given a letter stating that I would be rehired. I'd never disclosed my HIV status to my employer, though, and now I fear I won't be rehired. I thought that privacy laws prohibited this type of conduct. Am I mistaken?

Christa Douaihy, Esq., responds in the "Legal Issues and HIV" forum


 Will ObamaCare Cause Employers to Dump Their Health Programs?
Do you think that companies will start getting rid of their employee health insurance programs when "ObamaCare" goes into effect? What's going to happen to people living with HIV in this scenario?

Jacques Chambers, C.L.U., responds in the "Workplace and Insurance Issues" forum


what's new in the forums: spiritual support and aging
Rev. Todd A Brown and Nelson Vergel
We're pleased to announce that this month, two long-dormant "Ask the Experts" forums were given new life!

Brand-new expert Rev. Todd A. Brown is now on hand to answer questions about matters of spirituality and HIV/AIDS. Rev. Brown brings to TheBody.com extensive experience working with interfaith groups and HIV service organizations, as well as churches striving to build sound HIV/AIDS ministries. Learn more about Rev. Brown, and ask a question on the Spiritual Support and HIV forum!

In addition, longtime expert Nelson Vergel will be extending his reach to answer your questions in a second forum: Aging With HIV.



HIV/AIDS TREATMENT


 Are There Any Interactions Between Club Drugs and My HIV Meds?
I was diagnosed with HIV last year and am about to start HIV treatment. I take recreational drugs occasionally, namely ketamine, ecstasy (MDMA) and GHB, but not in excessive amounts. Are there any interactions between HIV meds and recreational drugs? If so, what do I need to watch out for?

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


 Thinking About Switching Meds: What Should I Consider?
I've been taking HIV meds for years off and on. There are some medications I can't take anymore. I've been on Combivir (AZT/3TC), Norvir (ritonavir) and Reyataz (atazanavir) for the last five years. I feel great, my viral load is undetectable and my CD4 count is 600. I started seeing a new doctor who suggested I switch out Combivir in favor of Truvada (tenofovir/FTC). This makes me nervous. Any suggestions?

Benjamin Young, M.D., Ph.D., responds in the "Choosing Your Meds" forum


OTHER HEALTH ISSUES & HIV/AIDS


 What Can a Poz Prostate Cancer Survivor Do About Wasting and Libido Loss?
I'm a "young" 72 year old; I started taking HIV meds 20 years ago. My CD4 count is 620 and my viral load is undetectable. I was treated for prostate cancer with radioactive pellets three years ago. Now I'm experiencing rapid body wasting and loss of my libido. My oncologist suggests raising my testosterone level, but my primary care physician says absolutely not. What are my options?

Nelson Vergel responds in the "Aging With HIV" forum


 Extremely Painful Gas: Should I Be Concerned?
For several days I've had what I hope is just a gas bubble in my stomach, but it won't go away. When I gently push on my stomach it feels like I'm being punched. It hurts when I bend over, twist, or try to turn in bed. I haven't slept much for two nights because the pain keeps me awake. I'm on Norvir (ritonavir), Prezista (darunavir) and Truvada (tenofovir/FTC). Is this issue normal?

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


Connect With Others

Reactions to HIV: Things That Make You Go "Hmm"
(A recent post from the "Living With HIV" board)

You tell someone that you have cancer, heart disease, etc., and they are all "I am so sorry." And yet you tell them you have HIV and suddenly it's, "How did you get it? What kind of sex did you have? Are you gay?" Interesting. Has anyone else noticed this? -- Cruhaven

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HIV & HEPATITIS TESTING


 Will Hepatitis C Mess With My HIV Test Results?
I had a PCR test for HIV at six weeks post exposure, an antibody test at 15 weeks post exposure and an oral antibody test at 22 weeks post exposure. All my test results were negative for HIV. I am hepatitis C positive, though. Does having hepatitis affect HIV test results?

Shannon R. Southall responds in the "Safe Sex and HIV Prevention" forum





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