July 31, 2012
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Living With HIV

 The Saga Continues: Is Sushi Safe for People Living With HIV?
Dear Nelson: I've read responses from you in which you state that sushi is not a good choice for a poz person's diet. I live in Japan and eat sushi, sashimi and other raw fish products regularly. I asked my HIV doctor and he assured me that sushi is not a problem for me. Could you shed some more light on your claim?

Nelson Vergel responds in the "Nutrition and Exercise" forum

 When Traveling, Should I Bring My Medicine Bottles and Packaging?
I'm HIV positive and an insulin-dependent diabetic. I'm going on a 14-night cruise abroad. Do I need to bring the bottles and packaging my meds and needles come in, in addition to the meds and needles themselves?

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

aids 2012 @ thebody.com

March to End AIDS What to know what went down last week at the XIX International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012) in Washington, D.C.?

Check out TheBody.com's coverage of AIDS 2012 for entertaining and informative videos, clinical updates, and reflections on the largest HIV-related gathering in the world!

Mixed-Status Couples

 Is My Boyfriend Right About My Lowered HIV Risk?
My boyfriend is HIV positive and I'm not. His viral load is undetectable and he takes his medication religiously. He has promised me that as long as he wears a condom I'm safe. He has even offered to pull out of me when he ejaculates. He insists that with a condom, his undetectable viral load and coitus interruptus, I couldn't be any safer. Is this true?

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

Insurance, Workplace & Legal Concerns

 How Can I Plan Ahead for Retirement?
I'm a 58-year-old living with HIV and taking HIV meds, with a high-deductible employer-based health insurance plan that pays 100 percent of my health care. I plan to work until 2020 when I'll be 66 and the Medicare Part D "donut hole" problem will cease to exist. What resources are available now to prepare for the decisions I have to make in eight years regarding health insurance, Medicare and paying thousands per year for meds?

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

HIV/AIDS Treatment

 Can I Still Plan for a Bright Future?
I'm an HIV-positive guy and I've been taking HIV meds for the past few years. My diagnosis left me devastated and wondering what the future holds for me if I stay on treatment. Is it true that HIV-positive people have a near-normal life expectancy, as stated in many reports; or does the "real world" of cancers and heart issues tell a different story? Is it a sane decision to marry someone HIV negative? Can I father a healthy, HIV-negative child? Will there possibly be a functional cure for HIV in the near future?

Joseph P. McGowan, M.D., F.A.C.P., responds in the "Choosing Your Meds" forum

 How Should I Deal With My HIV Med Side Effects?
I began HIV treatment with Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir) and Truvada (tenofovir/FTC) on May 15 and I haven't missed a dose. My CD4 count is 659 and my last viral load was around 9,900. Lately I've been experiencing really bad side effects: nausea, pain in my muscles and stomach, and others. I feel I can't have a normal life with these side effects. What can I do? Should I just stop taking treatment?

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

Visual AIDS: Art from HIV-Positive Artists

Image from the July 2012 Visual AIDS gallery Detail from:
"Going to the Land of the Dead," 1983
Copy Berg

Visit the July 2012 Visual AIDS Web Gallery to view our latest collection of art by HIV-positive artists! This month's gallery, "Overnight Wave (For Arthur)," is curated by Rick Herron.

Other Health Issues & HIV/AIDS

 Should I Be Worrying About CMV?
I tested HIV positive on Valentine's Day 2011 with a viral load of about 100,000 and a CD4 count of 129. I immediately went on Atripla (efavirenz/tenofovir/FTC); I've had an undetectable viral load since August of last year, and my CD4 count and percentage continue to climb. Recently I was looking over my medical records and noticed that I was diagnosed with cytomegalovirus (CMV) disease in March. My primary care physician told me it wasn't anything to worry about -- he said I tested positive for the antibodies against CMV, but I show no symptoms. In other words, I've been exposed. Should I be worried about this?

Mark Holodniy, M.D., F.A.C.P., C.I.C., responds in the "Understanding Your Labs" forum

 White Blood Cells in My Partner's Pee: What Do They Mean?
My partner's doctor told him they found white blood cells in his urine. My partner also says it burns when he pees. This could mean a lot of things, right? Could the white blood cells indicate a life-threatening infection?

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

 How Can I Keep My Hepatitis B in Control Along With My HIV?
My HIV viral load is undetectable and my hepatitis B (hep B) viral load is 12,000. At this point hep B scares me more than HIV; I have less energy than I did a few years ago. What do I need to do to make sure my hep B is controlled? Is it all right that I'm taking Truvada (tenofovir/FTC)?

Barbara McGovern, M.D., responds in the "Hepatitis and HIV Coinfection" forum

HIV Transmission

 Broken Condom, Worried Bottom: What Next?
I had anal sex a few days back; I was the receiving partner (bottom) and the other guy wore a condom. Unfortunately, though, we had used oil before this, and because of the oil, the condom he was wearing broke. We stopped immediately. He did not ejaculate inside me at all but I'm worried about pre-cum. I don't know his HIV status, and I foolishly believed wearing a condom would keep me safe. What should I do now?

Lisa B. Hightow-Weidman, M.D., M.P.H., responds in the "Safe Sex and HIV Prevention" forum

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Activist Central

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