LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS
Which Erection Enhancers Can I Take With My HIV Meds?
I've been HIV positive since 1992, my CD4 count is low and my viral load is 12,000. I'm currently on Truvada (tenofovir/FTC) and Videx (didanosine, ddI), as well as Sporanox (itraconazole) to prevent fungal infections. What do you think of this regimen, and what is the safest erection-enhancing drug to take with it?
Should I Stop Drinking So Much Ensure?
I've been HIV positive for 19 years with a T-cell count in the 700-to-800 range and a viral load below 50. For the past 12 years I've been drinking nutritional shakes like Ensure almost daily. Although wasting is not an issue now, it has been in the past. I've also taken oxandrolone (Oxandrin) for 12 years. I'm 5 feet 9 inches tall and weigh 180 pounds. Do I really need to drink Ensure every day?
Is There Such a Thing as Partial Disability?
I have been HIV positive for eight years and I take Truvada (tenofovir/FTC) and Viramune (nevirapine). I also have a very stressful job and I don't know how much longer I can keep it up. I'm exhausted, I see a counselor regularly and I'm on Wellbutrin (bupropion) for anxiety and depression. I can't quit my job because I need the health insurance and I have a mortgage payment to make. I know I'm too healthy to go on full disability, but I feel like I'm having a nervous breakdown. Do you have any suggestions?
HIV/AIDS & BODY SHAPE CHANGES
How Common Is Lipodystrophy in HIVers Not on Meds?
I'm a 49-year-old gay man who's been HIV positive since 2004. Less than a year after my diagnosis, I began to notice that I was losing fat in my extremities and face. At the time, I wasn't on HIV meds, my viral load was undetectable and my CD4 count was well within the normal range (around 700). My lipodystrophy became so severe that I've had to get filler treatments in my face, hands, forearms and buttocks. How common is it for HIV-positive people to develop lipodystrophy without being on meds? What are some possible causes when meds aren't the culprits?
Ten Years Married and Just Diagnosed: How Did My Wife Stay HIV Negative?
My wife and I have been married for 10 years; we have two wonderful children and live the normal life of most suburbanites. Recently I was diagnosed HIV positive with a CD4 count of 200 and a viral load above 70,000. My wife has tested HIV negative. I know when I must have become positive, and it was before my wife and I were together. How, after 11 years of unprotected sex and two kids together, could she have stayed HIV negative? Is it just pure luck?
HIV/AIDS TREATMENT & SIDE EFFECTS
What's in Store for Multidrug-Resistant HIVers?
What are the options for HIVers on salvage treatment in 2010? I have low T cells and my virus is also dual tropic, which means CCR5 inhibitors like Selzentry (maraviroc) are of no use to me. Is anyone out there working on options for people in my situation?
Should My Viral Load Have Been Undetectable Before I Switched Meds?
I've been on Combivir (AZT/3TC) and Sustiva (efavirenz, Stocrin) for six years. I switched to Atripla (efavirenz/tenofovir/FTC) seven days ago while my CD4 count was 654 and my viral load was 78. I've had no problems so far, but since switching I've had a bad case of buyer's remorse. Should my viral load have been undetectable for this to be a safe switch? Have I put myself at risk for treatment failure?
Too Busy to Be Down in the Dumps: What Are My Options?
I was diagnosed with HIV about six months ago. I'm on Atripla (efavirenz/tenofovir/FTC), but I have a lot of mood swings and fatigue. I'm in the Army reserves, I'm a single father of a 9-year-old girl, I work full time and am taking three classes per semester in school, so I have a lot going on. What can I do?
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HIV TRANSMISSION & TESTING
I Took My Partner's HIV Meds as PEP: How Do I Stop?
My partner of more than a year is HIV positive. I took an OraQuick test in February and it came back positive. After that my partner and I had unprotected anal sex with me as the bottom. I started taking some of his Atripla (efavirenz/tenofovir/FTC) as post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) and went to an HIV specialist three days later. To my surprise, my Western blot test result came back negative. I didn't tell the specialist I was taking Atripla, but can I just stop taking it? Could the meds have skewed my Western blot result?
What Are the Odds That My Baby Is HIV Negative?
I'm an HIV-positive young female and my viral load has always been under 48. I got pregnant and was on HIV meds during my second and third trimesters. I delivered vaginally, my son received HIV meds after birth and I never breastfed him. When he was a month old we tested him for viral DNA, and the results came out negative. My doctor said that after four weeks the viral DNA PCR is a very sensitive and specific test, and that my baby is 100 percent HIV negative. Is this true? Could his results change before his next test three months from now?
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OTHER HEALTH ISSUES
How Can We Fight HIV-Associated Inflammation?
Is there anything HIVers can do to help our bodies reduce potential inflammation caused by HIV itself?
Can My HIV Meds Cause Diabetes?
I tested HIV positive in 2006. I recently started taking Duovir (nevirapine/zidovudine/lamivudine, only available as a generic combination pill outside the U.S.), Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir, known as Aluvia outside the U.S.) and Viread (tenofovir). After taking these meds for two months I developed diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). Could my HIV meds have brought on this effect? What are my options?
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