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J Med Assoc Thai. 2004 Feb;87(2):166-72.

Improvement of fat redistribution, insulin resistance and hepatic fatty infiltration in HIV-associated lipodystrophy syndrome by pioglitazone: a case report.

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Bamrasnaradura Institute, Nonthaburi 11000, Thailand.


HIV-associated lipodystrophy syndrome is a syndrome occurring in HIV-infected patients who were treated with highly-active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), especially regimen containing protease inhibitors. The syndrome consists of fat redistribution, with loss of subcutaneous fat and increase in visceral fat, and metabolic disturbances, including glucose intolerance or overt diabetes and dyslipidemia. No standard treatment has been established for this syndrome. Pioglitazone is an oral antidiabetic agent that acts primarily on adipose tissue to reduce insulin resistance. The authors report a 50-year old HIV-infected woman who developed HIV-associated lipodystrophy syndrome after 3 months of HAART. She had significant weight loss with obvious loss of subcutaneous fat, together with development of hypertension, diabetes and dyslipidemia. After treatment with 30 milligrams of pioglitazone daily, her body weight increased within the first month of treatment. Subcutaneous fat loss was restored. Improvement in glycemic and lipid control was also noted. CT scan of the abdomen revealed that fatty infiltration in the liver was markedly decreased. Visceral fat as assessed by CT scan had also decreased. Pioglitazone appeared to have beneficial effects in this patient.

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