Figure 2-7: Interactions of HIV Medications With Street Drugs

Figure 2-7
Interactions of HIV Medications With Street Drugs
Drug Interaction and Effects
Ecstasy3- to 10-fold buildup of 3,4-methylene-dioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in the blood, bruxism (teeth grinding), palpitations, joint stiffness, dehydration. Possibility of liver and kidney damage. May be deadly.
Speed/Methamphetamine2- to 3-fold buildup of methamphetamine in the blood, increased anxiety, manic behavior, shortness of breath, racing heart beat, and dehydration.
HeroinHeroin is metabolized more quickly; less "hit," less "buzz," withdrawal symptoms.
Special K (ketamine hydrochloride)Buildup of ketamine is likely; increased sedation, disorientation, and hallucinations. Effects last longer.
CocaineLittle is known about cocaine's interaction with PIs as no studies have been conducted, but if an individual has HIV, smoking, shooting, or even snorting cocaine may compromise the immune system. In one test-tube study, cocaine made HIV reproduce 20 times faster than normal.
GHB (gamma hydroxybutyric acid)Combining GHB with the antiprotease drugs is another unknown. Like many recreational drugs, GHB may suppress the immune system.
Source: Adapted with permission from Horn, 1998.

From: Chapter 2—Medical Assessment and Treatment

Cover of Substance Abuse Treatment for Persons with HIV/AIDS
Substance Abuse Treatment for Persons with HIV/AIDS.
Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series, No. 37.
Center for Substance Abuse Treatment.

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