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Boning Up on Bone Density

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Michael Walkowski

Hi Sean, Thank you for sharing. I often wonder where the latest and greatest malady is going to rear it's ugly head next. After surviving the initial onslaught of the virus in the early eighties I was forced to go on meds eight years ago. Since, I have had all the joint, bone and muscle issues one could possible have. I was astounded by a simple product developed by Dr. Diehl out of NIH which alleviates the effect of arthritis in canine, equine and humans. I tried it and won't take another drug for those issues again. I've also maintained a high dosage of vitamins and minerals to keep strong. With aging comes the natural process of atrophy but if you keep moving you can slow that process a bit. David had some very good points as well and I feel he's correct in the observation that the youth infected of late could care less about their treatment. WE need to educate them and instruct them to seek and maintain care under a doctors supervision at all cost. This is a great forum for just that. Keep up the good fight. Your work is always appreciated. Regards, Michael

June 14, 2011

David G. Gee

Hi Sean, Last year I read about impact of HIV and/or meds on bone density. Now I knew nothing about "bone density" (after 22 years infection) and my doctor with largest HIV patient population in this city (he told me) knows next to zero about HIV. I get to teach him as much as he'll endure. Last year I requested (demanded) a bone scan. He was OK with it. Results showed me to be at the mid stage loss of bone density, osteopenia. He applied to the provincial (state) medical services insurance to have them cover the costs of the meds. They replied, "No". I asked him to appeal. He did on the basis that I am HIV (that was his appeal!) They replied, "No". I asked him if it would be OK with him if I called them. He said, "OK." I called them and began to 'politely' tell them about the relationship between HIV and bone density deterioration. It was news to them. They patched me through to their consultant pharmacologist. We spoke for 15 minutes and when she was satisfied that I was 'well-informed' and that she was not, regarding HIV and bone density, she changed the policy to allow coverage of the recommended medication (Teva-Risedronate). I'll have a bone density follow-up in a few months. Meanwhile I ingest Calcium with Magnesium and Vitamn D. Calcium alone isn't worth much; it has to supported by magnesium. Vitamin D is also a required component of this cocktail. I suppose the message is that us HIV folk have to be vigilant about whatever the latest HIV intrusions. Then we have to take a strong and informed advocacy stance. Physicians in this part of the world, for the most part, don't/can't/won't make the time to update their professional skills about HIV. And I have a hunch that most of the HIV infected people aren't very interested either. They seem to believe that they're either too young to lose bone density or their doc's will be on top of it if it's serious. By that time, it really can be too late. Well, not everyone's is in denial, it's just that old stuff about "Out of sight, out of mind?" Thanks for the chance to share that experience with you. I tend to think that those HIV infected among us, especially the 'young' ones have a headlock on that old myth about 'I'm young and ain't gonna get old, no way'! Heads up y'all. The ball's in your court. Thanks for bringing this stuff up, Sean. I'm afraid that not very many of us are taking responsibility for our own health. Sad. Thanks again! David

June 14, 2011

Mark S. King

My HIV doctor wrote me a 'script to get a bone density test months ago and I never had it done. This just changed my mind. Thanks for sharing, Sean!

July 29, 2010


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