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Author Topic: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?  (Read 2555 times)

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Offline nick2046

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« on: August 31, 2006, 09:23:14 AM »
Hi, i've an urgent question regarding my treatment but i want a 2nd opinion. 

I'm on Combivir together with a Non-Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (Sustiva).  My CD4 has been increasing slowly over the years & is now 240.

The doctor wants to switch to another nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs), Trizivir.  It's essentially same as Combivir but it contains one more drug, 300mg of ZiagenŽ (abacavir).  Often, ppl associate more drugs causing more interactions & have more side effects.

My question is, is it sensible to switch, as both drugs have the same dosage.  Doctor says Combinvir has this Long Term side effect (she didn't bother to explain any further) but all these drugs are basically poison to other ppl, each drug has its side effect.  Moreover, i don't think i'll live a long life; so, is it worth the trouble?
And so it has been, and so it is written
    On the doorway to paradise
    That those who falter and those who fall
    Must pay the price

Offline newt

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,878
  • the one and original newt
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2006, 01:11:45 PM »
Hello Nick,

First, there's no reason to think you won't have a long life, especially now your CD4 is over 200.

Second, there's no obvious reason to swap Combivir for Trizivir. If Sustiva + Combivir is keeping your viral load down and your CD4s up, adding another drug is unnecessary.

A better switch would be to Truvada (tenofovir + FTC) or Epzicom (abacavir +3TC).  This would get rid of AZT and avoid the long-term side effects connected with this drug (fat loss in the face and limbs, & perhaps heart muscle damage). 

- matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline nick2046

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2006, 11:23:16 PM »
Thank you for replying & your advice. 


When i said i won't live for too long, it has nth to do with being infected.  Average lifespan around the world is around double what it was 200 years ago.
It is now around 65 for men and 70 for women; i'm way past my 1/2 life.  :'(

My thought exactly.  She did mention Lipodystrophy but didn't bother to further explain it, as if i was too stupid to understand.  She also gave me wrong info on Trizivir saying i only needed to take 1 tablet a day.

I'd've been dead if i was born just 25 years earlier, so i'm on stolen time; and i deserve that stolen time. ie best drug diet i could get.  Thanks.   
And so it has been, and so it is written
    On the doorway to paradise
    That those who falter and those who fall
    Must pay the price

Offline edfu

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,084
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #3 on: September 08, 2006, 05:26:29 AM »
I participated in an experimental study, ACTG 5095, which compared Combivir + Sustiva vs. Trizivir + Sustiva vs. Trizivir alone.  The results of the study in brief:  1.  Trizivir alone is not recommended.  2.  There is NO advantage whatsoever in taking Trizivir (3 drugs) + Sustiva vs. Combivir (2 drugs) + Sustiva.

There is no reason I can think of for recommending a switch to Trizivir from Combivir.  I humbly suggest your doctor is wrong.  ACTG 5095 proved that 4 drugs are not necessarily better than 3 drugs.

When the study ended and it was unblinded (nobody knew who was on which of the three regimens), I learned I had been on Trizivir + Sustiva.  I decided to drop the AZT component and switched my drugs to Epzicom + Sustiva.  Three months later, my CD4 count went up 300. 

I knew I didn't have a bad reaction to Ziagen (abacavir), since it was part of the Trizivir.  You would have to be concerned with that, but my suggestion, like Newt's,  would be to switch to Epzicom + Sustiva.  Get rid of the AZT.   
   
"No one will ever be free so long as there are pestilences."--Albert Camus, "The Plague"

"Mankind can never be free until the last brick in the last church falls on the head of the last priest."--Voltaire

Offline lydgate

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,022
  • Virgin, can't drive
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #4 on: September 08, 2006, 08:40:25 AM »
While we're on the subject of getting rid of things -- try, if you can, to get rid of your pessimism regarding your life-span (and other things). Don't get me wrong, I love bitching and moaning and whining and complaining and kvetching as much as the next guy; but I do think that's different from going around thinking I'm going to die as per the statistical average life-span for men in the West today! Statistics apply to large groups; they're well-nigh useless when applied to "predict" what will happen to a single entity, in this case you.

I, too, would have been dead if I'd been born 400 years ago (bubonic plague perhaps), or 200 years ago (consumption maybe) or 100 years ago (cholera epidemic possibly) &etc... What I'm trying to say, Nick, is that you were not born 25 years ago; you were born when you were born. The phrase "borrowed time" is all very well as the title of a memoir (Paul Monette) written 15 years ago; but, with access to medical care and a good response to treatment, why go through life thinking you're borrowing from an account that might run dry soon?

Just saying.

Jay
Her finely-touched spirit had still its fine issues, though they were not widely visible. Her full nature, like that river of which Cyrus broke the strength, spent itself in channels which had no great name on the earth. But the effect of her being on those around her was incalculably diffusive: for the growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts; and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.

George Eliot, Middlemarch, final paragraph

Offline nick2046

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2006, 07:05:51 PM »
Edfu-san,

Thanks very much for the extra info.  I'll see the pharmacist next Tue and i've prepared a short SA on it.  Your info. will help to make my argument stronger, with scientific contolled expt. done on the subject.
And so it has been, and so it is written
    On the doorway to paradise
    That those who falter and those who fall
    Must pay the price

Offline edfu

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,084
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2006, 02:29:43 AM »
http://www.thebody.com/confs/icaac2005/wilkin4.html

Nick, here is more definitive confirmation than just my word for it.  Perhaps you can print out this link. 

Also, after 3 years in the study, when I was taking Trizivir + Sustiva, my CD4 was exactly where yours is, in the mid-200's.  (I began with a CD4 of 29.)  After only 3 months on Epzicom + Sustiva, my CD4 jumped to over 500 and has remained there for 2 years. 

I wish you good luck and reiterate that it's nonsensical to switch from Combivir to Trizivir.   
"No one will ever be free so long as there are pestilences."--Albert Camus, "The Plague"

"Mankind can never be free until the last brick in the last church falls on the head of the last priest."--Voltaire

Offline Marshall

  • Member
  • Posts: 15
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #7 on: September 09, 2006, 07:53:03 AM »
Hi Nick

I will leave the meds info to people who are more clued than me. But re: living on borrowed time well you get knocked down by a bus tday tomorrow, even if you were negative!

Get it!

Marshall
You can never have enough friends!

Offline nick2046

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2006, 10:02:46 AM »
Met the pharmacist just this morning, will start Epzicom when i finish my stock of Combivir.

Also will stop taking Clindamycin for my Toxoplasmosis if my CD4 remains >200 next time (in Nov), too see how my body likes the new drug.  Thank you for providing useful info. & links 

PS: Marshall-san, i used the word 'stolen', with a hint of guilt in it.
And so it has been, and so it is written
    On the doorway to paradise
    That those who falter and those who fall
    Must pay the price

Offline kentb

  • Member
  • Posts: 75
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2006, 03:10:54 PM »
I have been on Trizivir for about 6 years and the next time I go to my doc. I am going to ask him to put me on something different from this class of drugs that "Does not include AZT"  due to the thinning in my lower arms.  Just something to consider,

Kent

Offline nick2046

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: Switching from Combinvir to Trizivir?
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2006, 06:07:55 PM »
Kenth-san,

How did you notice? Did you loss much weight?  Now that i am ok to have sth other than AZT, I'm reliefed.  6 years is enough  to do damage? I'm on Combvir for nearly 5 years!  Hope you can reverse the damage done.
And so it has been, and so it is written
    On the doorway to paradise
    That those who falter and those who fall
    Must pay the price

 


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