The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App 
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol


Seven Considerations When Starting HIV Medications

October 23, 2015


1. Accept a New Way of Life

1. Accept a New Way of Life

Most people have many strong emotions such as anger, fear and sadness after testing positive. Each of these feelings is entirely normal, yet all of them can easily be projected onto one little pill. HIV medications, even if taken only once a day, are a constant reminder of your serostatus, and they leave little room for denial or avoidance. The road to acceptance of living with HIV can be long and difficult. Resisting this process can mean delaying the start of a regimen, or taking medications inconsistently or not at all. It is essential to work with your support system (friends, family and health care providers) to identify and express any negative feelings you are experiencing about being HIV positive so that you are ready to commit to this new daily routine.

This article was provided by
See Also
HIV Medications: When to Start and What to Take -- A Guide From
More on When to Begin HIV Treatment

Reader Comments:

Comment by: ScotCharles (Los Angeles) Mon., Sep. 22, 2014 at 1:20 pm EDT
What a bunch of blowing smoke up your ass crap. I don't know how long you've been on meds; but, the longer you take them the worse the side effects are. After a while, you quit taking one drug because the side effects become unbearable only to begin another whose side effects after years become unbearable. I know your article is about beginnings; but, you should include that meds are a decades long proposition with severe long term consequences. I've been on meds 21 years, HIV+ 31 years and have had full blown AIDS
Reply to this comment

Comment by: Ed (NY) Mon., Jul. 14, 2014 at 5:30 pm EDT
i would like to make it clear that taking Truvada was explained by my HIV MD as the benefits outway the risks. in any event i found myself in stg #5 ESRD in sep 2014. quite the surprise after being pos for over 26yrs. i am presently on hemodialysis 3x/wk and am on cleve clinic's "waiting list". My local county hosp will not list me stating "lung Disease". it is of my opinion that they infrequently do HIV pt. listings, but they fall back on the "lung" issue inspite of getting 2 letters from pulmonologists saying i was at low risk and of course i could always apply elsewhere. the vice pres of Pt. Advocacy is also the risk mgt and come to find out she is one of the hosp atty's. a def conflict of interest. can anyone help me to challenge them? there stats indicate a low % of HIV pt's being listed. any help would be appreciated. ty
Reply to this comment

Comment by: Celestina (Nigeria) Wed., Nov. 27, 2013 at 3:13 pm EST
Cd4 drops no sign of sickness at all,the last i did the test it was 605 but now 517 why is it so,does it mean my body is forming resistance to the drugs or what?
Reply to this comment

Comment by: Geraldine (Nigeria) Wed., Nov. 6, 2013 at 4:58 am EST
Hiv is going round in Nigeria , somone u know got HIV at the age of 14 years and he doesnt know how he got it but he has vowed to share it as much as he can because he is angry that he got it and cant explian how.AHF should please focus on Nigeria before his likes will share it everywhere. Serious advocacy testing etc is required please
Reply to this comment

Comment by: Ditto Thu., Oct. 24, 2013 at 11:25 pm EDT
Always astonishing to me how when it comes to PrEP, all concerns are brushed aside. If you have the misfortune to actually seroconvert, the conversation changes. We start hearing "Whoah, hold your horses. Are you sure you're not a drug addict? Do you really think you're prepared to take one, maybe three pills EVER DAY? Is anybody checking to make sure you're really taking your pills? We think you can stand to be a little sicker, so maybe you should wait". Maybe newly diagnosed would do better to tell their providers that they're negative and can't be bothered to wear a rubber to save their life. "I need this to live" just doesn't seem to hold any sway with the medical community these days. Or is it that having the misfortune to produce antibodies fundamentally alters out view of what people are capable of?
Reply to this comment

Comment by: steve (San Diego) Wed., Oct. 9, 2013 at 11:32 pm EDT
Wow! Kind of sensationalized scaremongering there dude! I was diagnosed 1/13 CDC staging C2, started Stribild 2/13. The first week on meds was hell, linear progression to no big deal by week 4. 2 log fall in 30 days, 5 months to undetectable. Cd 4 normal range now >500 and 30% and improving. All in all no f*ucking deal, no side effects. Take my pill every morning (100% cART complaint is the key!) and give it a kiss and blessing for making my life 100% normal again :) Stop perpetuating the stigma please and lets just get on with living our wonderful but all too short lives :)
Reply to this comment
Replies to this comment:
Comment by: joe Sat., Nov. 23, 2013 at 4:33 pm EST
Thanks for your up lifting advice

Add Your Comment:
(Please note: Your name and comment will be public, and may even show up in
Internet search results. Be careful when providing personal information! Before
adding your comment, please read's Comment Policy.)

Your Name:

Your Location:

(ex: San Francisco, CA)

Your Comment:

Characters remaining: