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April 14, 2008
In This Hot Topics:
  • HIV Treatment & Complications
  • Body Shape Changes
  • Hepatitis
  • Living With HIV
  • Strange but True

    Edwin DeJesus, M.D., F.A.C.P.The Body is pleased to welcome a new expert to our "Choosing Your Meds" forum! Edwin DeJesus, M.D., has joined our outstanding team of experts to answer your questions about starting and switching HIV medications. The medical director of the Orlando Immunology Center in downtown Orlando, Fla., Dr. DeJesus is one of the most experienced and respected HIV clinician/researchers in the United States. Stop in at the "Choosing Your Meds" forum and say hello!

    Treating HIV Through Gene Therapy?
    I know that researchers have been looking into using gene therapy to treat HIV. How soon do you think that sort of treatment will be available, and how would it work?

    I Missed My Once-Daily Dose
    I have been on my first HIV treatment regimen -- once-daily Atripla (efavirenz/tenofovir/FTC), as well as Bactrim (to prevent pneumonia) -- for five and a half months. Last night, I missed my dose of both drugs! It's the first time that ever happened. Are my meds going to stop working?

    You Can Get Insurance Coverage for Liposuction!
    I wanted to get liposuction to remove my abnormal fat deposits -- and I was able to get my insurance company to pay for it! I wanted to let everyone know that, with the help of a specialist and a sympathetic lawyer, you can get coverage for liposuction too.

    How Common Is Fat Loss on HIV Meds?
    What are the odds that someone with HIV will develop fat loss while taking Atripla (efavirenz/tenofovir/FTC)? How about other HIV meds?

    Switching HIV Meds Only Made My Body Shape Problems Worse!
    I switched HIV meds to avoid developing body shape problems, but since I switched, my breasts have grown and I'm losing facial fat. What can I do now?

    I've Got Hepatitis C and HIV; Is My Liver Bound to Get Worse?
    Is a person with hepatitis C and HIV destined to experience liver decompensation (a.k.a. liver failure)?

    Is Sexual Transmission of Hep C Common?
    I've read research that suggests hepatitis C transmission is more common among gay men than experts once thought. What do you know about this?

    If I Get a Vasectomy, Can I Avoid Disclosing My Status?
    I'm a gay man who tested positive in December, and I'm starting to think about dating again. However, I'm having trouble dealing with disclosure. Would getting a vasectomy prevent me from passing HIV to my partners, removing my need to tell them I have HIV?

    Newly Diagnosed HIVer With Many Questions
    I was just diagnosed with HIV, and I have lots of questions: How long should I expect to live? Who should I tell I have HIV? How will living with this disease affect my life and my relationships?

    How Do I Tell My Parents I'm Positive?
    I just tested positive and I'm too scared to even get my CD4 count checked. I'm having severe headaches and struggling with depression. My boyfriend and my friends have been really supportive, but I still have to break the news to my parents, and I'm afraid they'll kick me out of the house. What should I do?

    Can HIV Meds Cause a False-Positive Drug Test?
    I'm about to start a new job, but they're going to give me a drug test before I begin work. Could any of my HIV medications cause a false-positive result on the test?

    No HIV Meds, but No Viral Load?
    Why do some people with HIV have undetectable viral loads even though they've never taken meds? Could these people have gotten rid of the virus entirely?

    Just Another Day at the Watering Hole
    I was in a lake the other day when I came across two men masturbating each other underwater. I was 18 feet away, but at some point I noticed that some semen had floated over and settled on my leg. I immediately removed the semen with water and sand, but could I still have become infected with HIV?

    Visual AIDS
    Art From HIV-Positive Artists

    Stop in and browse the full collection!
    "Ocean Series #3," 2002; Tara Popick
    Visit the April 2008 Visual AIDS Web Gallery to view our latest collection of art by HIV-positive artists! This month's gallery, entitled "Red, White & Blue," is curated by Max-Carlos Martinez and Edward Winkleman.

    Connect With Others
    t The Body's Bulletin Boards

    Feel Like Giving Up
    (A recent post from the
    "Living With HIV" board)

    "Does anyone ever just feel like giving up? By giving up, I don't mean suicide -- I mean stop taking meds, stop getting treatment, etc. Let nature take its course, so to speak. My life sucks right now, and doesn't seem to be getting any better, nor does there seem to be any hope for it to get better. ...

    It just seems that my family would be better off financially with my social security death benefit when I die. ... I have exhausted all community resources to help us, my case manager from the local AIDS program can't help us much more, and I don't know what to do or where to turn. I didn't take my meds last night, and haven't taken them today. It just seems pointless and that everyone would be better off without me around to burden them. ...

    Does anyone else ever feel this way? How do you get through it? Someone please talk to me."

    -- dj1979

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