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Study shows switching from Zerit can improve lipoatrophy

Study shows switching from Zerit can improve lipoatrophy

A study in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases shows that switching HIV-positive people from a regimen containing Zerit (d4T) to one containing either Ziagen or Retrovir can result in significant improvements in lipoatrophy, the loss of body fat linked with the use of anti-HIV medications. After 48 weeks of being switched off regimens containing Zerit, study subjects had a median increase in arm fat of 35%, in leg fat of 12%, and in trunk fat of 18%. Facial fat measurements were not recorded, but a survey of the study subjects showed that 27% felt they had regained some fat in their faces, while 22% reported apparent fat gains in the arms, and 19% said they had more fat in the buttocks. The researchers conclude that replacing Zerit in an anti-HIV drug regimen can result in significant improvements in HIV-related lipoatrophy while continuing to suppress HIV replication. Previous studies have shown that after a median duration of 14 months, as many as 60% of HIV patients taking Zerit will experience fat loss. Other factors linked with lipoatrophy include duration of HIV disease, length of time on anti-HIV medications, older age, having had advanced HIV disease, and elevated triglyceride levels.

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