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Author Topic: Atripla- Just started  (Read 2014 times)

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Offline Papillon_44

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Atripla- Just started
« on: July 06, 2010, 06:13:46 PM »
 I just started on Atripla (I am calling it Ambrosia*) last Friday (after being HIV positive for 23 years and never having taken meds before).  My VL was at 35K and my CD4 was at 240.

I was absolutely terrified to take the Atripla (code word Ambrosia) because I heard about all of the horrific side effects everyone has been experiencing in some degree or other.  As for my experience with the Atripla- day 4 and so far my dreams havenít been any trippier than they usually are, drunk feeling only happened on the first day.  No body rashes (yet- but Iím crossing my fingers they wonít happen at all), no diarrhea or other unpleasant flatulence (lol). 

Iím fairly active and social so you can imagine how my appearance is a major concern for me- Iím a gay man, OK?  Call me vain, but I am worried about the redness on my face- Rosacea.  I had it mildly for the last 10 years but in the last year or so it has gotten noticeably worse and since taking the Atripla I notice it even more.  Itís splotchy and looks like I am blotchy or flushed.  Has anyone else had this problem?  How was it resolved (or not)?  Prior to taking the Atripla I had skin issues akin to folliculitis but it has been under control since I have had a ketoconazole cream and a minocycline prescription (which I think is helping the folliculitis problem but NOT the roscaea).

Also, I run and go to the gym and have noticed my strength and endurance is diminished a bit- when I went running on Sunday I noticed my legs/knees felt a bit numb and wobbly and I couldnít do as many reps in a set as Iím used to at the gym (8 or 9 instead of 10-15).  Anyone else notice a diminished physical strength with the Ambrosia (aka Atripla)?  I love exercising and donít want to feel like I canít meet my previous exercise goals.

Other than that, what are some benefits others have experienced?  I would really appreciate any feedback others may have.

Papillion 44

ē   In ancient Greek mythology, ambrosia is sometimes the food, sometimes the drink, of the Greek gods (or demigods), often depicted as conferring ageless immortality upon whoever consumes it.
Papillion_44

Offline sisterr

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2010, 10:02:35 AM »
hi papillon

may the force be with you. my brother started ambrosia (his code words are stocrin and truvada) 8 days ago. he has experienced some pretty mean side effects - but that may be because his health is not at the same level yours is. also, in reading the posts - statistically it does seem the side effects are hectic for the minority. he has experienced high levels of anxiety - but i think he leans toward anxiety without the meds! try not to be terrified - more important to be aware of your body and have a good doctor and pharmacist, and anyone you can get real assistance and info from.

also, everyone says to just hang in there and i am going to say the same thing - today he is having a really great day. and for him, a really great day is getting out of bed to have his meals... he's still got to get well enough to go back to the gym! two weeks ago i thought he'd probably never see the inside of a gym again... now i just don't know how long it will take him to get back there.

i am sure others with more experience and a greater understanding of atripla will post here too - also read everything - EVERYTHING! there are 43 pages of treatment and side effect topics... and other content.

Offline originaltim

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2010, 12:53:59 PM »
 :) Good luck and dont be discouraged.. I only experienced the redness and flushness when I tried to take mine in the AM...that is why is it recommended to take it at night. The dreams are the only side effect that lingers which is better than all of the other side effects I hear about from other meds. 

Offline Papillon_44

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2010, 01:54:00 PM »
Hi, thanks for your feedback.  I'm sorry your brother hadnít been doing to well- heís lucky to have a sibling so concerned and helpful.  I suspect things will get better.

Iím only 5 days into the Atripla treatment and side effects so far have been minimal if not non-existent.  I was at the gym yesterday and noticed my endurance was the same it was my strength that seemed a little out of whack. 

Iím being optimistic but realistic about what to expect from this drug.  I still would like to know what are the positives about taking Atripla (tenofovir/Viread), emtricitabine /Emtriva,  efavirenz/Sustiva).  And no-one has really answered my question about Rosacea and other skin conditions that occur whilst taking Atripla aka Ambrosia ; )

Anyone?

Thanks!
Papillion_44

Offline Ann

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2010, 03:13:26 PM »

I still would like to know what are the positives about taking Atripla (tenofovir/Viread), emtricitabine /Emtriva,  efavirenz/Sustiva).

It (they) gets your virus under control so it doesn't kill you, with minimal side-effects, especially when you compare it (them) to some of the earlier drugs available.

Sorry, I don't know much about the skin problems.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2010, 03:15:40 PM by Ann »
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline northernguy

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2010, 12:28:34 AM »
Like you I suffer from rosacea (which I'm convinced is HIV related) as well as seborrheic dermatitis.  Atripla hasn't made it any worse, but it hasn't made it any better either.
Apr 28/06 cd4 600 vl 10,600 cd% 25
Nov 8/09 cd4 510 vl 49,5000 cd% 16
Jan 16/10 cd4 660 vl 54,309 cd% 16
Feb 17/10 Started Atripla
Mar 7/10 cd4 710 vl 1,076 cd% 21
Apr 18/10 cd4 920 vl 268 cd% 28
Jun 19/10 cd4 450 vl 60 cd% 25
Aug 15/10 cd4 680 vl 205 cd% 27
Apr 3/11 cd4 780 vl <40 cd% 30
Jul 17/11 cd4 960 vl <40 cd%33
April 15/12 cd4 1,010 vl <40 cd% 39
April 20/12 Switched to Viramune + Truvada
Aug 2/12 cd4 1040, vl <40, cd% 38
Oct 19 cd4 1,110 vl <40 cd% 41

Offline Batman4oz

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2010, 04:01:05 PM »
I have also just recently started on Atripla, and am not happy with it.  It makes me bloated after I take it (on an empty stomach, and I don't like water anyway, so that doesn't help!), the dreams have subsided a bit, but I am dizzy all the time, and my vision is blurry!
So...how am I supposed to actually Function on this stuff?!  I have No energy, no stamina and my arms are like limp string.  No desire or strength to work out to help that situation.  Tell me this will all change...soon?!
I was in better shape Before I started taking it!

Bruce
JUDY-ism...the Only religion I need!
WWJD...What Would JUDY Do?!
www.thebatcaveofoz.us
               ^^X^^

Offline Papillon_44

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2010, 01:35:36 PM »
I would try to not eat at least 2 or three hours before taking the Atripla- I only experienced dizziness and blurred vision the first couple of days.  Now I'm experiencing skin conditions on my face and hair loss...  And I have never had these issues before after 23 years of being poz. 

I think these medications must be pretty toxic.
Papillion_44

Offline phildinftlaudy

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  • sweet Ann what you think babe...
Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2010, 01:49:31 PM »
I would try to not eat at least 2 or three hours before taking the Atripla- I only experienced dizziness and blurred vision the first couple of days.  Now I'm experiencing skin conditions on my face and hair loss...  And I have never had these issues before after 23 years of being poz. 

I think these medications must be pretty toxic.
Hey Pap -
Sorry to hear you are having some difficulties... I thought you said that you had some mild Rosacea for the past 10 years (prior to going on the meds) --- Perhaps, the immune reconstitution; the virus itself; and/or the meds have aggravated the condition? 

As Ms. P and others have said on one of your other threads, see if it clears up -- usually the side effects resolve/subside within a few weeks of starting the regimen.  Follow up with you doctor also.

In terms of the medications being toxic - most drugs have some type of toxicity (there always has to be a cost/benefit analysis - does the risk or cost outweigh the benefits of taking the drug).  We know that HIV is "toxic." 

I agree that quality of life is important that is why it is probably a good idea to check with your doc and if it appears that the Atripla is the cause or is exasperating any of your previous conditions (i.e. Rosacea) you can look into changing meds.

Best to you -
Phil
September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

Offline Papillon_44

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2010, 01:57:42 PM »
Hey Pap -
I thought you said that you had some mild Rosacea for the past 10 years (prior to going on the meds) ---

Yes, I did and it was pretty much unnoticeable- I noticed of course.  Prior to starting the meds it got a little worse and now since starting them I can see that it is unbelievably worse- I don't even want to leave the house.  (Thatís what I mean by quantity vs. quality)  I want to enjoy life not have an undetectable VL and be a hermit never leaving my home or seeing friends because of side effects...  Is this what I have to look forward to with these frkn meds?
Papillion_44

Offline Batman4oz

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2010, 03:58:35 PM »
Well, for the last couple of nights, I have actually had a snack (hey, when the market has 4 chocolate cupcakes for a buck!) of two cupcakes and milk and then taken the pill and gone to bed.  NO dreams, and NO dizziness!  So..maybe my system is getting used to the invading drug?!  I know, that for me, taking anything with water is bad, especially on an empty stomach, since I Hate water and it makes me nauseous! My fluid intake has always been orange juice in the morning....Coke the other 23 hours!  A six-pack a day for more than 40 years...and I'm still 5' 7" and 140lbs! Sadly, no 'six-pack' on me anymore, but that could change, once I feel better and get back to my work-outs?!  My inspiration...DaveNC! Have you Seen his picture here?!!
I have always known that 'medicine' and 'drugs' are Bad for humans....they are toxic.  I don't even have aspirin in my house.  My doctor told me to take Bactrum, fearing that since my count was down to 204 that I could get pneumonia, but I know that it was making me feel awful, so I stopped that when I started the Atripla.
If anything proves that each of us is truly an 'individual' it surely must be how we react to meds!
Good luck to us all!

Bruce Wayne
JUDY-ism...the Only religion I need!
WWJD...What Would JUDY Do?!
www.thebatcaveofoz.us
               ^^X^^

Offline Papillon_44

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Re: Atripla- Just started
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2010, 04:10:59 PM »
Just FYI- Red blotchiness and hair loss aside- I have had no other side effects.  Been able to run (did my usual 7 miles yesterday) and go to the gym 3- 4 days a week (have a 6 pack). 

I think taking Atripla on an empty stomach before bed is working for me- no dizzy or too funky dreams or drunken feeling in the morning.  I think dairy and carbonated drinks- beer and soft drinks will add to the bloating feeling and I know too much dairy in the diet will cause diarrhea/and/or other bowel problems.  I never touch those things anyway so I have had no trouble there.  I am making a pointed effort to eat better food- more veggies and fresh food as opposed to fast or canned, processed etc.  I really want this to work but I have misgivings.  I looked and felt fine for 23 years before my numbers slipped and now I have to take these meds for life.  Me- a person who has issues with taking even an aspirin for a headache. 

Mostly I am curious if others have experienced the same trouble I have experienced and if so how they handled the problems/side effects.  And if indeed the meds are worth all the trouble...
Papillion_44

 


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