Monday, 21 April 2008

So Far So Good - but its early yet!


So far the only effects I have noticed are :

Vivid dreams - to the point, but not quite, of disturbing.

Agitation - Not too bad - yet - nothing that I can not deal with so far. At one point I thought I may have a panic attack, did not and am now fine, just a bit 'on edge'.

Heightened Sense of Smell! - This is the one side effect I can definitely say is real yet this is the one not in any of the information leaflets about any of the HIV meds I am taking. But this one definitely exists. I can smell an armpit at 30 paces!! can even smell that the dog is coming into the room before he does - very odd!!

Not sure if any of this is just being caused by my anxiety of taking the HIV medication or are 'real' side effects? When taking medication that is a toxic and powerful as HIIV meds have to be - you do have to have some reaction I guess

I did have odd vivid dreams all last night. However I am someone that this happens to sometimes anyway. So I thought it can not be the drugs as yet? But I must admit they were very strange dreams and not as my vivid dreams usually are as they woke me up and every time I went back to sleep they happened again.

Unfortunately I had watched the wrong thing before I went to bed as I had watched a programme called 'extraordinary people' about a young man who due to a lowered immune system - not HIV but a genetic problem with his Tcells - has such a colony of warts get hold of his hands and feet that the growths look like trees branches .....totally ..............horrible .....poor man!!

As you can see from the picture it was enough to give anyone nightmares and not what I should have been watching ................. not the thing to watch just before you go to sleep when you have a lowered immune system due to HIV and are taking medication that is known to give quite a lot of people vivid and often disturbing dreams!!!!!! I do not know why I did watch it, as this is not something I would normally have as evening TV viewing!!

I dreamt that I too had theses warts due to my lowered immune system and became a circus act like this unfortunate young man...................

On one of the HIV Poz boards I remember reading a discussion about this, where it recommends that you can set yourself up for 'good vivid dreams' rather than disturbing ones by what you read or watch before bed! This person suggested Porn!!

Not sure this would work for me as I do often find Porn disturbing!!

But I get the idea and will not in future watch anything disturbing before bed that may get incorporated into a dream!

I am also what can only be described as 'agitated' but apart from the worry first thing - but not the reality - that I would have a panic attack due to it it is not really any real problem so far.
I am not sure that my 'agitation' is a side effect or it has been caused by being anxious about having taken theses drugs and watchful for any side effects.

But it is not as yet a real problem, as long as it does not get worse this is OK. In fact it is giving me some energy to get on with things and I have a web site I am long overdue with and hope to do this today. I have in the past used slight agitation/anxiety to get things done.

Heightened sense of Smell - this one is very real !! And it HAS to be the drugs as I have NEVER had this before ever. I can smell everything in a rich tapestry of smells, I can smell animals and people before they come into the room!! As I pass objects or things in the kitchen I can smell every smell as distinct and definable.

Yet this is not mentioned in any of the drug literature?? But both the meds I am on are quite new and the full side effects are still being noted.

Its not really a problem. And I guess the explanation is that at least two of the drugs I am on are known to affect the Central Nervous System - so my heightened sense of smell is part of this I am sure.

I am grateful therefore that it affecting my CNS has only so far manifested itself in this odd sense of smell - as symptoms like nausea, vomiting, dizziness are all also CNS symptoms and I do not want those as i just can not cope with nausea or vomiting .

So a heightened sense of smell is fine by me and maybe it will spur me on to keeping my house cleaner and more smell free!!!
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