Archive for the Medical Category

6 Months after

Posted in HIV, Medical, Personal, pozzie life, thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 2, 2010 by iamhivpositive

At the start of November, I started waiting for a text from the SAGIP clinic of PGH. It has been six months already and it’s the time for my next CD4 test. 2 weeks have passed and still no text from my doctor or from the nurse so I decided to call them. Once I was put through to the clinic, the nurse told me that there are no available slots yet and they’ll just text me if there is a slot already. She asked for my number to double check if what they have on their chart is correct.

I sighed. I’m getting disappointed with how they are handling us their patients. But I tried to look at the bigger picture, it would really be difficult for them to schedule us since we are just sharing the machine from other “schools” (treatment hubs). And so I waited for another week until I can’t help myself and again gave them a ring.

The nurse told me that there is still no available slot for the CD4 test and that they are prioritizing the “baseliners” (first timers in taking their CD4 test). I felt… unimportant? So does that mean that since I am a second timer I should not be prioritized? My health is also at stake right?

She then asked me if I am willing to go RITM since there is more chance of me getting a schedule there. Even though that RITM is quite far from where I live, I said yes. I would rather travel far than wait for a schedule from SLH. It might be too late already before I get a schedule. And so after 2 days, I received a text message from the nurse telling me that I was scheduled Tuesday before 9am next week.

I woke up really early that day because I don’t want to be late. A friend asked me if I want to hitch a ride since he is also going to RITM that day. Lucky me considering all the trouble that I will be facing if ever I go there alone. I haven’t been to Alabang yet and I’m quite slow with directions. Hehehe.

We arrived early in RITM and so we decided to stay in the cafeteria first. The first thing I noticed about RITM is that it is isolated. It’s the only building, I think, in that area of Alabang. It was very quiet and there were a lot of trees that will give you a very calm feeling.

My friend went ahead and guided me to the clinic. He was greeted by the nurse I’ve been reading and hearing a lot, ate Anna. Her warm smile could really make you comfortable and homey. She asked me if I was with my friend and I said yes, she then asked me to sit beside her and got my recommendation letter. While she was reading the letter, she kept on telling me that life goes on… and I smiled.

Once again, my friend ushered me to the laboratory where they will have my blood extracted. The nurse who’s going to facilitate was quite young and I can tell that she is still a student. I smiled at her and told her not to make it hurtful. She smiled back. As expected, she had a hard time in extracting my blood since my veins easily pops (pumuputok) or as they say, “sumasayaw”. After roughly 15 minutes, I was on my way back to the clinic. I was happy that at last, I am done with my CD4 test all I need to worry now is just the result.

Wanna know my latest CD4 count….? From 759 6 months ago…. It’s now…. 795!!!!
Yehey!!!! I though that my CD4 is going to drop since I am not taking ARVs. But I was wrong, thanks to Centrum, Vit. E with Selenium, Poten Cee and most of all YOGA for boosting my CD4 up!

Drug ‘can greatly reduce risk of HIV infection’

Posted in HIV, Medical, news, pozzie life with tags , , , , , on November 26, 2010 by iamhivpositive

A drug used to treat HIV-positive patients may offer gay and bisexual men some protection against contracting the virus, the authors of a new study say.

Trials of the combination drug Truvada among nearly 2,500 men suggested it could reduce the chances of male-to-male HIV infection by 44%.

Those using the drug regularly could further reduce the risk of infection, it was claimed.

The study is published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Pills and condoms

Truvada is the trade name of a drug manufactured by the California-based company Gilead Sciences Inc which combines two antiretroviral drugs, used to treat Aids.

But this new study looks at whether it could be used to prevent HIV infection in the first place.

Almost 2,500 gay or bisexual men were randomly selected in Peru, Ecuador, Brazil, South Africa, Thailand and the United States. Half were given the pill, half were given dummy tablets.

All the men were also given condoms and counselling on safe sex.

What the researchers found after about a year of testing was that the drug appeared to cut male-to-male HIV transmission by 44%, when the group taking the pill was compared with the placebo group.

Those who took the pill regularly were deemed to have reduced their risk of infection further, by up to 73%, and blood tests were run to confirm this relationship between pill-usage and protection levels.

The research was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the federal US body, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). The pills were donated by their manufacturer.

NIAID director, Dr Anthony Fauci, conceded more work needed to be done, but called the results impressive.

“This has been done in men who have sex with men. We need to know if we get similar results in women as well as in heterosexual men, which we have reason to believe we will,” he told the BBC.

“We also need to get a long term view of were there any toxicities. We didn’t see anything that was significant but we need to follow that for a long period of time.”
Questions and concerns

The trial does of course raise questions and concerns. Is it possible, for instance, that the results were skewed by greater condom use in the group that took the pill; and won’t such findings encourage some men to dispense with condoms altogether in favour of a drug?

There is also the issue of prohibitive cost of Truvada, which retails in the US for around $36 a day, and which makes the drug unaffordable to many possible users.

Dr Fauci argues that the two groups were fully randomised and says that drugs can only play a complementary role in the war on HIV. Condoms and fewer partners, he said, remain the first line of defence.

“We’re hoping that if this does become a useable tool in prevention, then the associated counselling will complement the effect of the drug and stop people becoming cavalier about it and say ‘now I have a pill I don’t have to worry’.

“That’s exactly the opposite of what we want to happen. We want to add something rather than have it replace something.”

Sir Nick Partridge, chief executive of the Terrence Higgins Trust, called the trial results “potentially significant”.

“It’s vital that we expand the ways we can prevent HIV transmission, particularly amongst those most at risk,” he said in a statement. “This trial proves that HIV treatment will have an impact on prevention, but that it’s not ready for widespread use yet.

“Three major hurdles are still going to be its cost, the risks of drug-resistant strains of HIV developing and taking a drug treatment every day.”

By Neil Bowdler
Science reporter, BBC News
source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-11820963

Petition to Replenish Global Fund – repost from “moving on from 46479”

Posted in Medical, Personal, pozzie life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 21, 2010 by iamhivpositive

if you are taking advantage of the free ARVs in the philippines or would like to take advantage of it when your CD4 falls below 500, then we need your help.

the world leaders are meeting up in new york, usa on oct 4-5, 2010 to announce their financial contributions to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria for the next three years.

in order to maintain, accelerate and effectively implement its programs, Global Fund needs usd20 billion.

we need to ensure that the world leaders uphold their promises to provide treatment and care to the millions living with and/or affected by HIV and AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. let them know that we are watching them. let us demand that they commit the usd20 billion needed by Global Fund.

show them that we care for the millions who will die without the Global Fund programs. do this by following the link and signing the petition.

http://www.globalfundreplenishment.org/sign-on-letter/

please send it to your friends, families, colleagues and networks and encourage them to sign up too.

500,000 signatures are need by thursday, sept 30, 2010!

the petition will be delivered to world leaders at the Replenishment Meeting, and is one of a number of actions that will be occurring around the world in the lead up to the meeting.

for more information on how your participation will make a difference, go to http://www.globalfundreplenishment.org.

An Invitation – YOGA LOCA

Posted in etc, friends, Medical, Personal, pozzie life with tags , , , , , , on August 27, 2010 by iamhivpositive

Hi,

You ready to Yoga with your Tanga? ^__^

I am inviting you guys to join YOGA LOCA… it is the YOGA for the FABULOUSLY GAY, and the GAY FABULOUS!

If you are interested… please feel free to contact the number in the poster….

Thank you!

xoxo,
JunJun

54!

Posted in Medical, Personal, pozzie life, thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 22, 2010 by iamhivpositive

Sad, I trailed my way going to the SAGIP clinic of PGH. While walking there were a lot of flash backs in my head. Memories from 4 months ago… memories that I now have to fully let go.

I arrived 5 minutes before 1pm which is my check up schedule. I decided to put my back my happy mood since I have to let my doctor know that I’m doing fine. I knocked in the usual closed door of the small rectangular room. No one answered so I tried to open it, the small reception or nurse’s table was empty so I decided to open it a bit more. There was a girl, say early 30’s who was on the second cubicle and looked at me.

JunJun: Asan po yung nurse?
Lady: Ah, wala pa e… magwait na lang daw…

I thanked the lady and closed the door. I decided to wait outside and I texted my doctor informing him I was already outside. He replied back saying that I could come in and wait there instead. I went back to the clinic and took the visitor’s chair in front of the nurse’s desk. Dr. D suddenly popped out from the 2nd cubicle and asked me to go there. He asked me how I was and if I was living healthy and I told him everything that I have been doing. He was satisfied, I can say he was also happy hearing my happy stories.

He then took the weighing scale and prompt me to weigh myself and check my gain weight progress. I was soo excited and I even bragged that I gained weight. I told him he would be surprised. I carefully stepped on the machine and a little while, the number was clear… it’s 54. Yes, I am 54 kilos only. hahahaha. Dr. D smiled.

Dr. D: sige nga, tingnan natin kung nag-gain ka talaga…

He took a folder with my name on it, check my lab results until he found what he was looking for. My previous check up files. He smiled. Then said, it’s also 54!

Tooth Story 2

Posted in Medical, Personal, pozzie life, thoughts with tags , , , , , , , on August 16, 2010 by iamhivpositive

The day has finally come.  I decided to finally conquer my fear and face my dentist.  Besides the fact that I really need my teeth to be cleaned, I am also already itching to change the rubbers in brackets as it has been almost 3 months since the last time they changed it when it is supposed to be changed monthly.  Eeew? I know!

I remembered that my dentist scheduled me for a tooth extraction for my next visit and so If I’m going, it means that I’m going to have it now.  Gosh! My blood started rushing… yes, I was nervous.  Ever since I was young, I never went to a dentist to have my tooth extracted, I always just wait for it to fall off. hahaha.

My mom invited me for an early lunch and I decided to go with her first.  Yes, a free meal will really help before I start my soft diet adventure once again.   She asked me where would I like to eat and I ushered her to a restaurant where they serve unlimited rice.  Hell yes, I need unlimited rice!  I need to be full tanked before they adjust my brackets and just eat soup for 3 days.  I can’t afford to be like that when at the same time I’m taking my supplements which boosts my appetite.

After my free lunch with mum, I took a cab and when to my dentist’s clinic.  I arrived at 1145am, yes!  I arrived early means less waiting.  But when I got in the patients waiting area, my killer smile vanished.  There were like more than 20 patients before me! OMG!

After almost 2 hours of waiting, my name was called.  During those 2 hours, my heart did not stop in pounding so fast and I think the beating trebled as I approach my dentist.  My dentist smiled and asked me if I am ready for the extraction.  I just smiled.  I guess she noticed my nervousness that’s why she placed her hand where my heart is and smiled.

dentist: naku, di pwede yang ganyan…

JunJun: kinakabahan po ako e….

dentist: well, kailangan matangal na natin yan para sa next adjustment mo, mas madaling makakapwesto ung teeth mo sa harap…

JunJun: (smiled)

dentist: oh well, balik ka na lang next week for the extraction basta kailangan before your next adjustment wala na yan… alright? laksan mo lang ang loob mo, at ihanda mo yung sarili mo…

JunJun: opo… (relieved)

dentist: so for now, cleaning na lang muna tayo pero ill add rubbers that will pull your teeth backwards para maalign sa nasa baba…

The procedure was finished in no time and now, I’m still adjusting to the rubber pulling my upper teeth backwards… it’s quite painful actually… =)

Stretched

Posted in etc, Medical, Personal, pozzie life, thoughts with tags , , , , , , on August 8, 2010 by iamhivpositive

Last Saturday’s yoga session, for me, was really rejuvenating!  Yes, it was.

I arrived in the venue just in time before the class started, I was only at home for the whole day so I feel really up and perky to attend yoga class today.  I need some stretching. heheh.

A girl welcomed me in the venue, it was my first time to see her there.  She was slender, nice skin, bit tan… she looks pleasant… she looks very accomodating and nice… maybe this is Mr. Yogi’s partner instructor, so let’s call her Ms. Yogini.  She introduced herself and I also introduced myself.  She went inside the room and so was I after removing my shoes.  There were a few people inside the room already, some were changing to their yoga clothes and some were stretching. 

Mr. Yogi saw me and gave me a tight hug.  That felt nice, I really love hugging and for me it is a really nice gesture.  I immediately changed my clothes and sat in the matt.  I tried stretching for a little bit though I was a bit concious since I’m not really a pro in yoga. hehe.

“Doc” went to my matt and sat with me then told me stories about the last yoga session that they had, as you know I only attend the Saturday sesssion since I’m still in the office whenever they start yoga in Ortigas.  I really like it when he comes and sit with me in my matt… and slowly, one by one, mr. yogi and b.i.t.c.h also went to my matt, sat with us and exchanged stories.  It’s like my matt is always the hang out matt, and I like it. hehehe.

After a few more minutes, everyone went back to their matts and the session started.  Ms. yogi started the session by sharing something to us, something about what we are about to do, it is something about non violence.  Then followed by the breathing excercise and the poses.  I was really sweating as in OA sweating all through out the session.   Maybe because I was really concentrated and focused.  I really need this… I told myself and so I did my best to be perfect at it, if not atleast almost perfect.

This session really has gotten into me, I really felt every pain was worth it.  Every stretch was as if I am reaching for my happiness.  Every drop of sweat was like every pain and worries that I was slowly letting go…

I am really happy that I attended this last week’s session, not that I didn’t like the other that I attended in the past but this one really made me feel different, made me more one with my soul, made me more stronger physically….

I am definitely looking forward to the next session… I will give the same enthusiasm, focus and concentration like what I did the last time… now, that I experienced it myself why it is called YOGA FOR LIFE…