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Author Topic: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?  (Read 6410 times)

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Offline red_Dragon888

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Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« on: September 12, 2011, 08:42:44 PM »
I have been having problem with Atripla and most recently with my new medications, Truvada and Sustiva, as far as producing diarrhea, light colored stool with bad or foul gas smell, and or with bowel movements.  My first suspensions were that these medications has somehow cause an imbalance in my stomach bacteria flora or had caused the bad bacteria to out number the good bacteria and hence leaving me with diarrhea and the odorous foul after effects.  Now I feel. after having acid re-flux for over a couple of months, that I am now more than ever am totally lactose intolerant. 

After I had suspected that I can no longer digest milk or milk products like I use to, which was tolerable as compared to the present condition, it makes sense to avoid milk and milk products.  Now every-time I consume milk, cheese, yogurt and the rest, I have severe acid re-flux,  diarrhea and my bowels produce foul gas that is most offensive to anyone within range of the odor; however, once I have avoided these items, no diarrhea and no foul gas.

Has anyone else notice this phenomena?  It took me years to figure this out for I never had such bad gas in my life until I had started these medications.  Now I have to avoid milk/product most earnestly.  It seems the medications takes away the enzymes that digest milk.  It comes back if these drugs are avoided.
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Offline Nestor

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2011, 09:15:14 PM »
Hi,

I do not know if your medicines specifically can cause lactose intolerance, but I have heard of antibiotics causing it, and it is something that many people have anyway even without medicines, as they get older.  I've been on a kind of elimination diet, which I mentioned briefly in my thread about my own issues, and it includes eliminating milk products and all grains, especially the gluten grains.  The idea of an elimination diet is to cut out everything that could possibily be causing the problems and then, after a month or so, reintroduce them one at a time to see how your body responds. 

Now I must say that milk (real raw milk from grass-eating Jersey or Guernsey cows, that I used to get from farmers in Lancaster county) and great cheeses and Greek yogurts are some of my favorite things in the world, and I shall never give them up entirely, but if they do turn out to be not ideal for me I will be happy to regard them as once-in-a-while treats.  Two days ago I bought two great French cheeses (including a Roquefort--one of the best!) and eating them was glorious, but I do think that dairy products are at least part of the reason I used to have trouble keeping weight off, and I think from now on they are a sometimes thing. 

Now about acid reflux and gas--I had never had it before I took antibiotics a few months ago, but then I got them severely--yet another blessing for which I have to thank that stupid moment when I gave in to pressure and took antibiotics.  The acid reflux--heartburn--got worse and worse until I ate a seriously healthy diet, and then it went away.  Dairly products didn't bother me, but anything like pizza or a sandwich would--basically sugar, white flour, industrial oils.  If I avoided these things I was okay.  Also, eating in restaurants often causes problems that eating my own cooking at home never does--even if what I prepare at home and what I eat in a restaurant appear on the surface to be identical.  Your triggers may well be different from mine, so I suggest that you observe what you eat carefully and keep a record of how you feel after each meal.  Of course it sounds as if you've already done that with dairy, so good luck and I hope that simply avoiding dairy is enough for you to stay gerd free! 
Summer 2004--became HIV+
Dec. 2005--found out

Date          CD4    %       VL
Jan. '06    725    25      9,097
Nov. '06    671    34     52,202
Apr. '07    553    30      24,270
Sept. '07  685    27       4,849
Jan. '08    825    29       4,749
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Aug. '08    653    30       3,108
Oct. '08     819    28     10,046
Jan '09      547    31     13,000
May '09     645   25        6,478
Aug. '09    688   30      19,571
Nov. '09     641    27       9,598
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May '10      687      9    799,000 (CMV)
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July  '11      530    22      39,000
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Offline buginme2

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2011, 03:10:50 AM »
I doubt that your medications has all of the sudden made you lactose intollerant.  Your symptoms "diarrhea, light colored stool with bad or foul gas smell, and or with bowel movements" could possibly be the result of a liver problem, since you recently had a change in medication (or formulation) it would be appropriate to mention these to your doctor just to make sure its not your liver (liver disease is very common in HIV+ peeps).
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2011, 07:38:14 AM »
I doubt that your medications has all of the sudden made you lactose intollerant.  Your symptoms "diarrhea, light colored stool with bad or foul gas smell, and or with bowel movements" could possibly be the result of a liver problem, since you recently had a change in medication (or formulation) it would be appropriate to mention these to your doctor just to make sure its not your liver (liver disease is very common in HIV+ peeps).
I do remember that the medications had the side effects of light colored stool but the foul gas was always a problem for me whenever I take Atripla or the sustiva.  That was I gotten off of it in the first place.  Oh yes, the meds do effect my kidneys but I am not sure it had any medical effects upon my liver. 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=I3ba3lnFHik

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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2011, 07:43:55 AM »
I do remember that the medications had the side effects of light colored stool but the foul gas was always a problem for me whenever I take Atripla or the sustiva.  That was I gotten off of it in the first place.  Oh yes, the meds do effect my kidneys but I am not sure it had any medical effects upon my liver. 
The only reason for me being back on these meds was that my former meds gave me high fevers, nights sweats and depression.
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2011, 08:27:18 AM »
Hi,

I do not know if your medicines specifically can cause lactose intolerance, but I have heard of antibiotics causing it, and it is something that many people have anyway even without medicines, as they get older.  I've been on a kind of elimination diet, which I mentioned briefly in my thread about my own issues, and it includes eliminating milk products and all grains, especially the gluten grains... so good luck and I hope that simply avoiding dairy is enough for you to stay gerd free! 
The recent event of acid re-flux was new, since the sometime in July, and I first thought it was caused by eating too much mustard with my hot dogs one day at the beach.  Actually, that could have started it and it a nasty experience.

Currently, I am taking Nexium but the avoidance of milk, cake with milk, spaghetti sauce with cheese in it, Parmesan cheese, etcetera, help me avoid the hiccups, the coking and the re-flux better than anything else.  Trust and believe that acid re-flux with the coking was like causing so much harm that I had feared that I would coke to death in my sleep.  I would got to sleep hiccuping and that was scary.

Unfortunately, I have to avoid hot chocolate drink, which is my favorite hot or cold drink, but I can always use dark chocolate with almond milk.  I also do not think that soy milk agrees with me.  Again, I never was good at digesting raw milk, milk or milk products and at best, before the meds, I had a tolerable bad smell.  Now I know, and I may take Lactose pills just in case I wish to eat cake again.

There was a time I just blamed it all on irritable bowel syndrome.  I am just glad I am not suffering like I use to.

Yes, I am older, but the malady happened too suddenly and before to just blame it on age.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=I3ba3lnFHik

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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2011, 08:29:42 AM »
Hi,  ...

Your triggers may well be different from mine, so I suggest that you observe what you eat carefully and keep a record of how you feel after each meal.  Of course it sounds as if you've already done that with dairy, so good luck and I hope that simply avoiding dairy is enough for you to stay gerd free! 
Thanks for the advice.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=I3ba3lnFHik

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Offline thunter34

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2011, 12:06:32 PM »
I have been dealing with severe lactose intolerence for years.  I have to have those little lactaid pills with me at all times.  The first trip I made in Seattle (like before I even got into my hotel room) was to the drug store to get some more lactaid pills because dairy turns up in all sorts of unexpected places.

And if I consume dairy without those pills, the result is gas so toxic it could shut down several city blocks and possibly get me interrogated by Homeland Security.
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2011, 12:10:35 PM »
It's not just an increase of age that can factor into this issue, but also race. African and Asian ancestry has a greater likelihood than a Northern European one. Something like 90% vs. 5%.

I have had greater sensitivity as I passed 40, but it's only been marginal. I buy lactose-aid supermarket milk, but (like Nestor) still indulge in cheese (and yes, even raw milk from Lancaster County... it's so close to me) but I do this as a treat only once per month. If I eat ice cream, I try to eat gelato because it's more dense, and limit myself to four spoonfuls per serving.

Little adjustments like this can be easily made, IMO, plus they're simply a better diet and keeps weight off while not depriving yourself of something enjoyable.

Oh, and I also take digestive enzymes that greatly help with gassy issues.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 12:15:39 PM by Miss Philicia »
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2011, 09:58:16 PM »
Well I had a scare because I ate a hero sandwich with no cheese and the gas, bloating and hiccuping with coking started again and for the life of me I could not figure out why it happened.  Then I realize that the bread must have milk in it, just like the biscuit I had.  I was surprise that bread made with milk could make me react.  Milk hides in many places.
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Offline aztecan

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2011, 11:12:29 AM »
Well I had a scare because I ate a hero sandwich with no cheese and the gas, bloating and hiccuping with coking started again and for the life of me I could not figure out why it happened.  Then I realize that the bread must have milk in it, just like the biscuit I had.  I was surprise that bread made with milk could make me react.  Milk hides in many places.

What you are describing is not lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance is simply an inability to digest the sugar found in cow's milk.  It causes bloating, perhaps some nausea and diarrhea.

The miniscule amount of dairy that would be present in bread is not sufficient to cause a reaction, unless you ate the whole loaf and, even then, it is doubtful.

What you are describing sounds more like a food allergy, which is completely different.

I would recommend you speak to your doctor about this because additional testing may be needed.

What new meds are you taking? You said you were taking Atripla, then switched to Sustiva/Truvada, but those are the same thing. The only difference is two pills instead of one.

HUGS,

Mark
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2011, 12:02:04 AM »
What you are describing is not lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance is simply an inability to digest the sugar found in cow's milk.  It causes bloating, perhaps some nausea and diarrhea.

The miniscule amount of dairy that would be present in bread is not sufficient to cause a reaction, unless you ate the whole loaf and, even then, it is doubtful.

What you are describing sounds more like a food allergy, which is completely different.

I would recommend you speak to your doctor about this because additional testing may be needed.

What new meds are you taking? You said you were taking Atripla, then switched to Sustiva/Truvada, but those are the same thing. The only difference is two pills instead of one.

HUGS,

Mark

I respectfully disagree about your food allergy hypothesis for a "miniscule amount of dairy that would be present in bread is" sufficient to cause these side-effects.  If you read up on lactose intolerance, you will find that the symptoms that I am experiencing correlate.  Besides, this all started from the first time I took Atripla, since before that I had never had the digestive problems as I did when taking that drug. Yes, you are right that the medications are the same; however, and my mistake for not emphasizing this fact, those drugs must somehow stop the enzyme production that digest diary in some people. 

The new medication is Complera (rilpivirine + tenofovir + emtricitabine) http://www.aidsmeds.com/archive/Complera_2646.shtml Since, once again I am a "Guinea-pig" for my Doctor who is running a "clinical trial," that he thinks is unbeknost to me, or am I paranoid,  ;D , on me for this new drug, and I will not go into details.  I did have bad reactions to the other HIV drugs  from kidney dysfunctions to high fevers to edema.  It is a wonder that I have survive the side-effects. 

For now I am avoiding diary and waiting to purchase Lactaid and seriously considering changing the current medication for its possible side effects.  Any suggestions?
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Offline AnnieInBC

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2011, 12:13:57 PM »
(liver disease is very common in HIV+ peeps).

It is not at all common unless they *either* have Hep B or C infection, *or* are on ARVs as it is a known side effect of ARVs. Outside of those two things, in people without Hep B/C or on ARVs, liver disease is no more common in HIV+ people than the population in general.

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2011, 01:26:19 PM »
If you read up on lactose intolerance, you will find that the symptoms that I am experiencing correlate. 

Correlation does not imply causation
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Offline itsimple

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #14 on: September 21, 2011, 05:54:41 PM »
All manmade medications are metabolized by the liver. The liver has coreceptors that have specific duties to detoxify the "drug" and make it so that it can pass out of the body. Lactose intolerance is the normal for Adults whether with or without HIV. There are almost no species of animal that continues to drink breast milk into adulthood.  more later

What HIV meds are famous for is to mess up Fat metabolism. Coincidently, Milk has lots of fat. Try switching to Non-fat milk, Lactaid milk, or soy. It is also not uncommon to become sensitive to high levels of sugar (with or without HIV meds) as we grow older. Try limiting your sugar intake. Particularly table sugar. Fruits sugars are better. Then, if all else fails, try taking imodium a couple times a day to help with the diarrhea.

Good luck
« Last Edit: September 21, 2011, 06:34:15 PM by itsimple »

Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2011, 04:57:12 PM »
...

What HIV meds are famous for is to mess up Fat metabolism. Coincidently, Milk has lots of fat. Try switching to Non-fat milk, Lactaid milk, or soy. It is also not uncommon to become sensitive to high levels of sugar (with or without HIV meds) as we grow older. Try limiting your sugar intake. Particularly table sugar. Fruits sugars are better. Then, if all else fails, try taking imodium a couple times a day to help with the diarrhea.

Good luck
I've tried Lactaid milk and it's do-able with lesser foul flatulent, but my next adventure is the pills.

Soy milk is good but it causes the body to produce extra estrogen; however, there are other substitutes like almond, coconut and rice milk.  I like the almond milk but next time I will try the coconut and rice milks.

The Imodium is no defense against lactose intolerance because I've tried.  Tums works temporarily, like 15 minutes.  I had to learn the hard way and of course that is the way it reacts in my body.

So far avoiding all that has milk in it is fine.  I'd made one mistake of eating too much crackers last night and paid for it with gas, hiccups, bloating and foul flatulent.  I suspect the butter in it for before that I was fine. 

It is like walking a tight rope not to have these symptoms.  Now my favorite substitute for cake is jello with fruit, favorite milk is almond milk, my favorite yogurt is nothing and my favorite mash potato is made without milk or milk product.  I stopped eating battered fried fish and that was hard.

I've been down the food allergy path before but unless I am allergic to milk, and keep in mind that I had no problems until I started taking Atripla six years ago, with the foul flatulent syndrome, I cannot see it as anything else.  Of course the older I get I lose more of the ability to digest diary.

As for sugar, I just have one teaspoon with coffee for the day.
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Offline TXguy55

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2011, 12:01:02 PM »
OK, I can help. I have had almost identical symptoms for years. It was too easy for the doctor and I to blame the meds, so I have switched a couple of times. I took Imodium for years, and recently even thought that lactose was the problem. I really did seem to see a correlation. For me the problem has been gluten. It appears to be, or something similar to, Celiac's Disease. Now when I look back, I definitely see the correlation to flour and pasta. I'm sure you think I am crazy, but after changing what I eat about 10 weeks ago, I have not taken any Imodium or any lactaid, and have had no accidents and no urgent 'runs' for the bathroom. Sorry for the pun. I hesitate to call it diarrhea, cause it was more like just loose stool and something I would think they must mean when they say 'anal leaking'. I think more people have this than the doctors realize. Celiac's affects the small intestines ability to process gluten. Maybe our meds are doing the same thing. If you will give it a try I am 99% sure you will notice an improvement right away. I could tell it made a difference by the next day. Just cut out wheat, flour, malt and barley. I was having coffee and a large blueberry muffin (Costco) for breakfast, the blueberries are supposed to be good for us. But just like you said about the hotdog, I was thinking it was the milk, or butter, in the muffin that was causing the lactose problem, so I took lactaid. For lunch I would eat a sandwich, on a croissant, but again blamed it on the butter. Dinner was OK, usually a steak, baked potato and salad. But I would eat crackers with the salad. My point, each meal seemed to include the offending dairy product, oh, I forgot the bleu cheese dressing, but it wasn't the dairy, it was the flour. Also it helps to look up the list of gluten free foods. It shows up in places you wouldn't think like beer and some alcoholic spirits. Wine is ok. Hope I haven't talked your ears off, but I am sure of what I am telling you and can discuss more if you would like. Good luck.

Offline LoboDog

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2011, 10:51:17 PM »
Hey Red,

When I was diagnosed, I only had 47 T-cells. My initial year was a living hell... By the time I was diagnosed, I had already gone through a month straight of diarhea. To top things off, my first doc (may he rot in hell) decided to prescibe Kaletra for me... (that's like giving exlax to someone who already has diarhea)...

As time went by the diahrea never got better. After 6 months a friend told me that when his immune system got below 100, he went through a bout of lactose intolerance. He gave up the milk, avoided all food with lactose and was able to control things... At that point I was ready to try anything. I gave up all dairy products and low and behold, my symptoms became manageable. (I had been running to the bathroom 15 times a day).

There's a lot of controversy on this topic if you research it on the web... Many experts say that HIV is not a cause of lactose intolerance. All I can say is that I went through a period where lactose worked on me like liquid draino...

Bottom line though, you have to find what works for you. If avoiding dairy helps out, then by all means avoid dairy... take a calcium supplement though. (chec to make sure it doesn't effect your meds).

Life has gotten better for me in this regard... I can now consume low amounts of dairy without the extreme side effects that I once had. My friend reports the same thing.

Good luck to you... No one really understands how bad life can be when you don't know if you can trust your backside. My first doc (may he rot in hell again) once told me that diahrea can be debilitating... debilitating doesn't even begin to describe things when you are afraid to go to work, and when you plot out activities becuase you know where the emergency bathrooms are.

Offline littleprince

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #18 on: September 24, 2011, 04:08:38 AM »
I'm experiencing the same symptoms as you now. I found that stopping all alcohol almost totally resolved the symptoms. I have my next doctors appointment in a week so it will be interesting to see how my liver is going.

From what I understand foul smelling bowel motions could possibly be caused by liver or gall bladder issues where not enough bile is making it into the stomach to help digestion. Fats in your food then remain undigested and give the foul smell. If you cut out dairy you would be reducing your fat intake.

But really, foul smelling bowel motions could be caused by a number of things. Definitely discuss it with your doctor.

Offline Ann

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2011, 08:13:29 AM »

No one really understands how bad life can be when you don't know if you can trust your backside. My first doc (may he rot in hell again) once told me that diahrea can be debilitating... debilitating doesn't even begin to describe things when you are afraid to go to work, and when you plot out activities becuase you know where the emergency bathrooms are.


Amen, brother! Preach!

I've had hiv-related dire-rear for years now and I can't blame it on the meds because I'm still treatment naive. My numbers are good too, so I can't blame it on that either.

I call it the "river-water shits". It feels like someone has their hand in my belly, squeezing, twisting and pulling on my intestines. I can be totally "cleaned out" and still get the intense cramps that literally have me rolling around on the floor - crying, not laughing. ROFCMAO!

My doctor has only seen a few cases like mine where hiv has affected the GI tract so severely - and he tells me that he never really sees a big improvement in such people once meds are started.

Speaking of meds, I yelled out "OH NO!!!" when I read your first doctor put you on Kaletra - even before I read what you added about X-Lax. My cat, sitting next to me, jumped and gave me the evils. :D Good lord, what was that man thinking?

For a long time (months) I tried - and stuck to - what some people call a "stone age diet" where you remove pretty much everything; dairy, wheat, sugar, all the usual suspects. I had no improvement. We tried meds for IBS. We tried Immodium (prescription strength). I was tested for every parasite and bug under the sun. In desperation, I tried meditation (try meditating when all you want to do is have another shit) and visualisation. All to no avail.

The Immodium kinda-sorta worked in that it stopped the diarrhea, but it upset my stomach terribly. I felt permanently car-sick and if I did actually get in a car I'd end up throwing up if the journey was longer than a couple minutes.

Then when I was being treated for hep C, my doctor allowed me to have dihydrocodeine to manage some of the more painful side-effects and low and behold, it fixed my dire-rear without the stomach upset.

At last! I could leave the bathroom! I could leave the house! Yay!

I still take codeine nearly ten years later. I hate it - because of all the negative connotations that come with regular narcotic use, because of the way it can make it more difficult to cum, because because because - but I wouldn't be without it either. Can't be without it if I want a life outside the house.

I guess the moral of the story is that when you have hiv, the answers to GI problems aren't always straight-forward or easy to solve.  :-\
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #20 on: September 25, 2011, 01:28:07 PM »
OK, I can help. I have had almost identical symptoms for years. It was too easy for the doctor and I to blame the meds, so I have switched a couple of times. I took Imodium for years, and recently even thought that lactose was the problem. I really did seem to see a correlation. For me the problem has been gluten. It appears to be, or something similar to, Celiac's Disease. Now when I look back, I definitely see the correlation to flour and pasta. I'm sure you think I am crazy, but after changing what I eat about 10 weeks ago, I have not taken any Imodium or any lactaid, and have had no accidents and no urgent 'runs' for the bathroom. Sorry for the pun. I hesitate to call it diarrhea, cause it was more like just loose stool and something I would think they must mean when they say 'anal leaking'. I think more people have this than the doctors realize. Celiac's affects the small intestines ability to process gluten. Maybe our meds are doing the same thing. If you will give it a try I am 99% sure you will notice an improvement right away. I could tell it made a difference by the next day. Just cut out wheat, flour, malt and barley. I was having coffee and a large blueberry muffin (Costco) for breakfast, the blueberries are supposed to be good for us. But just like you said about the hotdog, I was thinking it was the milk, or butter, in the muffin that was causing the lactose problem, so I took lactaid. For lunch I would eat a sandwich, on a croissant, but again blamed it on the butter. Dinner was OK, usually a steak, baked potato and salad. But I would eat crackers with the salad. My point, each meal seemed to include the offending dairy product, oh, I forgot the bleu cheese dressing, but it wasn't the dairy, it was the flour. Also it helps to look up the list of gluten free foods. It shows up in places you wouldn't think like beer and some alcoholic spirits. Wine is ok. Hope I haven't talked your ears off, but I am sure of what I am telling you and can discuss more if you would like. Good luck.
I had the same idea and the same run around.  It is like chasing shadows that appear and disappears at will.  Other suggestions pop in my mind also, but for now, since I have cut out diary and diary byproducts, I have no hiccups, no gas, no bloating, no etc...  I have tried the gluten theory but for now I fine with my current solution.  I have notice I can eat fried chicken, maybe due to the fact that the dairy is somehow changed in the frying process.  Last night I had a Burger King Whopper with fried and a HI-C fruit drink and hiccuped slightly.  The milk in the bread suspect was the cause or as you mentioned, it could have been the flour in the bread.  Either way, I will see what happens next.

Thank you for your comment.

Red_Dragon888
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #21 on: September 25, 2011, 01:33:51 PM »
Hey Red,

When I was diagnosed, I only had 47 T-cells. My initial year was a living hell... By the time I was diagnosed, I had already gone through a month straight of diarhea. To top things off, my first doc (may he rot in hell) decided to prescibe Kaletra for me... (that's like giving exlax to someone who already has diarhea)...

As time went by the diahrea never got better. After 6 months a friend told me that when his immune system got below 100, he went through a bout of lactose intolerance. He gave up the milk, avoided all food with lactose and was able to control things... At that point I was ready to try anything. I gave up all dairy products and low and behold, my symptoms became manageable. (I had been running to the bathroom 15 times a day).

There's a lot of controversy on this topic if you research it on the web... Many experts say that HIV is not a cause of lactose intolerance. All I can say is that I went through a period where lactose worked on me like liquid draino...

Bottom line though, you have to find what works for you. If avoiding dairy helps out, then by all means avoid dairy... take a calcium supplement though. (chec to make sure it doesn't effect your meds).

Life has gotten better for me in this regard... I can now consume low amounts of dairy without the extreme side effects that I once had. My friend reports the same thing.

Good luck to you... No one really understands how bad life can be when you don't know if you can trust your backside. My first doc (may he rot in hell again) once told me that diahrea can be debilitating... debilitating doesn't even begin to describe things when you are afraid to go to work, and when you plot out activities becuase you know where the emergency bathrooms are.
I really know where you are coming from.  Doctors can only suggest, but you have to see whats works. 

Thanks for your reply.

Red_Dragon
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #22 on: September 25, 2011, 01:41:25 PM »
Amen, brother! Preach!

...
The Immodium kinda-sorta worked in that it stopped the diarrhea, but it upset my stomach terribly. I felt permanently car-sick and if I did actually get in a car I'd end up throwing up if the journey was longer than a couple minutes.

Then when I was being treated for hep C, my doctor allowed me to have dihydrocodeine to manage some of the more painful side-effects and low and behold, it fixed my dire-rear without the stomach upset.

At last! I could leave the bathroom! I could leave the house! Yay!

I still take codeine nearly ten years later. I hate it - because of all the negative connotations that come with regular narcotic use, because of the way it can make it more difficult to cum, because because because - but I wouldn't be without it either. Can't be without it if I want a life outside the house.

I guess the moral of the story is that when you have hiv, the answers to GI problems aren't always straight-forward or easy to solve.  :-\
Thanks for your reply.  I think that Imodium works on normal diarrhea, but not on mucus driven diarrhea.  That is why it works partially.  Or you have to triple the dose to get more effects.  But that is not advisable in the long run.
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #23 on: September 25, 2011, 01:42:30 PM »
Correlation does not imply causation
That is so true.
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Offline TXguy55

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #24 on: September 27, 2011, 05:27:04 PM »
I had the same idea and the same run around.  It is like chasing shadows that appear and disappears at will.  Other suggestions pop in my mind also, but for now, since I have cut out diary and diary byproducts, I have no hiccups, no gas, no bloating, no etc...  I have tried the gluten theory but for now I fine with my current solution.  I have notice I can eat fried chicken, maybe due to the fact that the dairy is somehow changed in the frying process.  Last night I had a Burger King Whopper with fried and a HI-C fruit drink and hiccuped slightly.  The milk in the bread suspect was the cause or as you mentioned, it could have been the flour in the bread.  Either way, I will see what happens next.

Thank you for your comment.

Red_Dragon888
Thanks for the reply. I am sooo glad you seemed to take my observations seriously. I really do think I am on to something here, so let me plea my case some more. I tend to agree with the previous post that said there is way too little milk in bread for it to be a problem. I guess we need to hear from someone that has tested lactose intolerant. I just have not heard of anyone saying they couldn't eat bread because of the milk. Also you said that you ate too many crackers the other night. I really do think it was the flour in the crackers, not the butter or milk. I did ask my doctor about tests to determine definitively whether I am lactose intolerant, however, since stumbling onto the flour theory, I have gone back to drinking chocolate milk, eating butter, yogurt, sour cream and no problems. I hate to give up bread and pasta but I am really glad to eat nachos again and not worry about the cheese. So I never followed up on getting tested for lactose, since it doesn't seem logical now. Additionally, the problem with testing for gluten is the blood test has a high false positive rate, so they normally have you go off the gluten free diet so the symptoms will return, then do a biopsy of the small intestine. Sorry, I'm just not going to do that when all evidence currently says gluten is the problem and drinking milk has not brought back the diarrhea. I think it was Ann that posted about trying the earth diets, but gluten shows up in so many different places. Did she really eliminate all sources of gluten? Here's one other thing, and maybe someone can post if they have further clarification... as I understand it, if you are lactose intolerant, and you go ahead and drink milk, and take lactaid to counter the effects, that is fine, you aren't doing any damage. If the problem is gluten, and you go ahead and eat flour, etc., and just take Imodium (or codeine) to counter the diarrhea, you are still damaging your small intestine and it will eventually cause serious problems. One more too, a different post said he cut out alcohol. I have never heard that alcohol can cause diarrhea, however, since grain is used in the process to make some distilled spirits, and barley and hops are used to brew beer, then here comes my gluten theory again. So I guess it depends on what alcohol was dropped. Also I am encouraged that you said you could eat fried chicken with no problems. I have avoided it but will give it a try and let you know what happens. I have also avoided Long Johns cause I assumed the battered fish would have too much flour, and the hushpuppies, while being mostly corn meal, they also have flour. I think most people try to cut out gluten, but just don't realize how many different places it shows up. And then, some foods just give you the runs, peaches still do it to me. More later...   

Offline Ann

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #25 on: September 28, 2011, 06:41:03 AM »
I think it was Ann that posted about trying the earth diets, but gluten shows up in so many different places. Did she really eliminate all sources of gluten?

I was on what is sometimes referred to as the "stone-age" diet and yes, I did eliminate gluten as well as dairy. I basically lived on fresh fruit and veg (the veg both raw and cooked) and tofu and beans (I was vegetarian at the time, if I did this again, I'd include chicken and maybe fish). I eliminated ALL processed foods. It's called the stone-age diet because everything you eat is very basic, like our stone-age ancestors would have eaten. It was tough going, but I stuck with it for about four months, with no results.

My doctor says it's just the hiv in my gut and it makes my intestines work overtime. The codeine slows this down. Whether or not it's doing long-term damage remains to be seen. :-\


edited to add...

I missed this on my first reading. (It's really difficult to follow posts that are a wall of text due to lack of paragraphs!)

I have never heard that alcohol can cause diarrhea,

You've obviously never drank Guinness. Or bitter or mild. All three are notorious for causing diarrhea, particularly "live" ales when the brew has gone off slightly. Even a good keg can cause the shits.

And by the way, when I was on the stone-age diet, I didn't drink alcohol. I mainly drank water and small amounts of fruit juices, and occasionally tea without milk or sugar.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2011, 06:55:19 AM by Ann »
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #26 on: October 06, 2011, 05:49:43 AM »
Thanks for the reply. I am sooo glad you seemed to take my observations seriously. I really do think I am on to something here, so let me plea my case some more. I tend to agree with the previous post that said there is way too little milk in bread for it to be a problem...And then, some foods just give you the runs, peaches still do it to me. More later...  
Thanks for your remarks. Well, last night me and my lover had "Banquet" frozen chicken, canned corn with margarine, mash potatoes (box) made with "Silk" Pure coconut milk with margarine and jello with fruit for desert.  Later I soon notice that my stomach felt too full, and after a bit the hiccups and bloating started.  I realize or suspected that the margarine, a dairy byproduct, was responsible.  My lover prepared the meal and let me know that there was margarine in the corn and mash potatoes.  I took no notice, mostly because I was hungry, but when the old symptoms occurred after I had finished the meal, I took a Lactaid pill and it helped immensely.   The was foul gas but the Lactaid soon cleared even that.  I guess if I've took it just before eating I would of have no symptoms.  Again it amazes me that just a little whey could still cause problems.  I guess if it was the flour from the chicken, then Lactaid would not have worked.   It is still best for me to avoid all diary products and byproducts unless I take the Lactaid first.  Now and before the meal I had low foul or non-foul smelling gas.  I always had problems with the diary thing, but it is more serious now.  It maybe genetics, age, however, my finger points to the HIV meds had made me more lactose intolerant.  As long as I keep it all in check, then it will not be and issue.

By the way, I would never test for allergies with surgery to take a chunk of my intestine when avoidance is working so well.  To me, it's like killing a horse fly with a sledge-hammer in a glass house.  It make no sense.  Also, I agree that the milk content in a hero sandwich must be low, but since I have no enzymes to process dairy and etc, it must have caused the problems.  

I have also eaten pre-toasted toast that is made with no dairy and it have no effect on my system at all.  I still could have sensitivities to flour, but how?  Possible when milk is involved, it makes the symptoms worst.  I'll keep you posted.  
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #27 on: October 06, 2011, 06:05:26 AM »
...

You've obviously never drank Guinness. Or bitter or mild. All three are notorious for causing diarrhea, particularly "live" ales when the brew has gone off slightly. Even a good keg can cause the shits.

And by the way, when I was on the stone-age diet, I didn't drink alcohol. I mainly drank water and small amounts of fruit juices, and occasionally tea without milk or sugar.
I remember there was an incident in the U.S. Naval Base Subic Bay over seas in the Philippines years ago when a fellow sailor got drunk from drinking beers in the Philippines and had "shitted" all over himself while sleeping.  I never suspected that the beer was the problem though, but now I do.
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Offline Ann

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #28 on: October 06, 2011, 07:17:03 AM »
Red, you're eating highly processed, instant mashed potatoes and you wonder why your guts hurt? Ouch. Get the real thing, cook them properly and mash them. Canned corn isn't the best either. Get frozen or fresh. Sounds to me like you might benefit from eliminating as much processed foods - particularly highly processed "foods" like instant spuds - from your diet as you can.
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #29 on: October 07, 2011, 10:25:55 AM »
Red, you're eating highly processed, instant mashed potatoes and you wonder why your guts hurt? Ouch. Get the real thing, cook them properly and mash them. Canned corn isn't the best either. Get frozen or fresh. Sounds to me like you might benefit from eliminating as much processed foods - particularly highly processed "foods" like instant spuds - from your diet as you can.
This is very true for the mash not as good as the real thing, and I do not really like corn, and canned corn even less. I may have to give up corn chips.  Thanks for the advice.
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #30 on: October 22, 2011, 09:56:53 AM »
There has been a significant improvement in my foul smell.  In fact, there is no smell to talk of.  As for the hiccups and the acid re flux, I have not have any since I have stop eating dairy and corn.  The one thing I had notice last night was that when I sipped some corn chowder soup, I had started to hiccup a minute later.  So, due to age or medication, I am staying away from these products, how Un-American, and eat basically chicken, vegetables, and oatmeal.  Fish does not seem to be a problem, but I rather stay away from it for now.
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Offline red_Dragon888

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Re: Is it possible that my HIV medication makes me lactose intolerant?
« Reply #31 on: October 28, 2011, 09:53:06 PM »
Well the smell is gone and I was eating peanut butter which caused severe gas and bloating.  So no more peanuts or peanut butter.  I have also learn that lactose intolerants is not the same as milk allergies.  I think I am both lactose intolerant and have an allergy to milk.  Not only milk but eggs also.  Raw food diet, and that sounds almost dirty, here I come.
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