Better AIDS drugs, or just fewer suicides?

December 19, 2009

(click to view image source)

I’m on a roll this month with AIDS research reports that intrigue me, particularly because so many of them raise more questions than they answer.  I’m not sure if there is a Holiday uptick in these reports, or if the cold weather just means I have more time on my hands to sit at the computer.

In any event, this study recently reported a greater than 50% decrease in suicides among “HIV-positives” in Switzerland since the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), aka the AIDS drug cocktail that includes protease inhibitors.

The report tries to explain the decrease by stating:  “In the pre-HAART era, high suicide rates were driven by disease progression, which at that time could not be prevented.”

There is no reference given to support this supposition.  It is also very possible that researchers are guilty of AIDSpeak, referring to laboratory markers such as viral load and cd4 counts, rather than actual illness, which is what really matters when referring to “disease progression”.

When HAART was first proposed, it was with a great deal of hyperbole and optimism, to the extreme of coining the term “Lazurus Syndrome”.  It is not surprising that people with such an ominous diagnosis hanging over their heads would take encouragement from this psychological media blast.

So the question my mind still begs:  are reports of increased life expectancy on HAART likely biased by this previously unreported fact?

In other words, if fewer poz people on HAART are offing themselves prematurely, would that not skew the research numbers on life expectancy?

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The slippery slope of AIDS drugs

December 18, 2009

pills and more pillsA review of this week’s list of research into current treatments for so-called HIV infection shows how patients seeking care in their doctor’s office can end up being on a long list of pharmaceutical drugs, mostly to treat the effects of ARVs (antiretroviral drugs).

There is a push to get more and more people on these drugs, regardless of whether they are actually presenting with any symptoms of illness. Some AIDS proponents even want healthy people with no positive test results to start taking the drugs, in the name of “prevention”.

The dangerous effects (there really is nothing “side” about them) of these drugs is downplayed.  We are told the new drugs are safe and effective, yet the research indicates otherwise.

One recently published study questioned which statin drug is best for treating dyslipidemia, the lipid disorder associated with disfiguring body changes known as lipodystrophy.  The answer was:  Crestor (rosuvastatin).

Fine.  Obviously AIDS drug researchers are admitting ARVs have serious unwanted effects.  Their answer to this problem?  More drugs, of course.

Unfortunately, the fix is also well known for having a long list of side effects.  Crestor is associated with so many damaging effects that I will only list the categories mentioned here:  musculoskeletal, renal, hepatic, respiratory, nervous system, psychiatric, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular,  endocrine, hematologic, dermatologic, genitourinary, hypersensitivity and “other”, which includes “flu syndrome”, infections, and a host of lab abnormalities!

Once a patient presents to his or her doctor with complaints from one of these drug-related effects, they are then prescribed additional drugs, which only adds to the momentum of ultimate drug abuse.

This is precisely how I ended up being on more than two dozen pharmaceutical drugs simultaneously, before quitting all of them in 2007.

Lipo is only one of the many complications poz people on HAART experience, and it may not be the worst one, but because its effects are so visible and disfiguring, patients will go to extremes to try to treat it.  Collagen implants for sunken cheeks and buttocks is a popular topic on the popular website aidsmeds.com, for example.

We have moved past the time when people were so ill from infections resulting from immune dysfunction that ARVs may have actually helped–the so-called “Lazurus effect”.  There may, in fact, be a role for such drastic intervention, but only in extreme cases.  To recommend lifelong chemotherapy to healthy people is beyond problematic, it is unethical.  AIDS proponents hate to hear it said, but those who benefit the most from this strategy are pharmaceutical companies and their investors.

Anyone facing the choice of taking AIDS drugs deserve access to all the information they need to make an informed choice.  No one should be pressured to do so when the evidence supporting their use is contradictory and the effects are so drastic.

More and more of us who are “poz” and have health problems are discovering we can extend our lives and improve the quality of our lives more effectively by consciously improving our health with lifestyle choices, rather than relying on drugs that ultimately create more new symptoms than they cure.

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How to profit from an AIDS denialist

December 12, 2009

Have I got a great investment opportunity for one of those AIDS apologists–someone who believes that any person testing positive for HIV antibodies will inevitably get AIDS and die in short order if they don’t take the drugs.

I have a life insurance policy that I can no longer afford to keep, and I’ve decided to cash it in while alive, rather than after I’m dead.  It is life insurance, after all.

I’ll give the details below, but here’s the gist of the offer:  I will sell my life insurance policy for a fraction of the death benefit value and in return I will pledge to never take ARVs (anti-retroviral drugs).  I’m willing to sign whatever legal document is required to protect the investor.

According to the orthodox view of HIV and AIDS, I have surely already exceeded the average life expectancy for an HIV-positive person who does not take AIDS drugs.  I’ve been poz for eleven years, since December, 1998.  I quit taking all HIV-related medications nearly seven years ago in February, 2003 and do not intend to take them again.  Actually, I have no idea how long someone is expected to live without the drugs, but know it isn’t supposed to be very long.  I can find no research willing to take a stab at current life expectancy without ARVs since last century, so anyone with that information is welcome to contact me.

This is a MetLife whole life policy with a face value of $88,000, current death benefit of $93,350, and an annual premium of $2,242.64.  There is an outstanding loan of about $8,500.

These types of policies used to be hot commodities for viatical settlement companies a decade ago, often paying up to 85% of face value, but have fallen out of favor since poz people are no longer dropping like flies.  Conventional wisdom attributes this improvement in longevity to ARVs, though some of us are finding out that we can live well without the drugs, provided we make the changes to our lifestyle necessary for good health.  AIDStruthers are adamant this isn’t possible.

I am not one of those rare “elite controllers” who have an undetectable viral load without ARVs.  I have a detectable viral load that bounces around.  My complete lab history can be seen right here on my blog.

If I’m wrong, I should be dead in a few years, right?  So a smart orthodox investor might be interested in buying my policy, paying the premiums and collecting the death benefit when I succumb to their theory.

Given those circumstances, and my willingness to forego any AIDS drugs, I think asking for 50% of the face value is a great bargain, but I might even be willing to negotiate an offer for less. I’ll payoff the loan from my portion of the sale, of course.  Assuming I live another five years (a preposterous assumption according to the AIDS orthodoxy), the investor will have contributed about $55,000 to collect more than a $93,000 payoff.

I’m also open to just about any other reasonable offer, minus the above pledge to never take ARVs, as I’m considering relinquishing the policy for the existing cash value (a pittance).  I’d love to do better and given the beliefs of so many AIDStruthers, I don’t see how one of them can pass up this opportunity to turn a goodly profit and have a chance to gloat at my demise at the same time!

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“House of Number” viewers agree to disagree

August 14, 2009



Two “HIV-positive” viewers with completely different opinions and experiences recommend this film.

Now showing at film festivals in the U.S. and Europe.  Check their website for current schedule, or sign up there for email alerts to find out when it will screen in your area.


Must-see “AIDS” film to show in KC

August 13, 2009

the HIV/AIDS story is being rewritten

the HIV/AIDS story is being rewritten

I’ve been anxiously waiting to see House of Numbers, the most talked about documentary dealing with AIDS this year. Now the film has been booked to show at the Kansas International Film Festival next month.

To get an idea of the significance of the confusing and contradictory comments made by leading AIDS researchers around the world, watch the trailer here.

House of Numbers stirred quite a row of controversy when it screened in Boston this Spring, then went on to be awarded the “Best of Festival” at Golden Colorado’s Docuwest Film Festival last week.

The film will be shown Sunday,  September 20 at 3:10 pm at the Glenwood Theatre, 9575 Metcalf Ave in Overland Park. (NOTE: Date has been corrected from my original post.)

If anyone else is interested in meeting after the film for discussion, please contact me and I’ll see what can be arranged.

  • “We can be exposed to HIV many times without being chronically infected. Our immune system will get rid of the virus within a few weeks, if you have a good immune system.”

– Luc Montagnier, 2008 Nobel Laureate for Discovery of HIV, in the documentary “House of Numbers,” 2009

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New webcam for youtube videos

July 15, 2009

I just posted a new video on youtube, discussing the LOTTI study I blogged about yesterday. Video is a new medium for me and I had such a positive response from my first video that I hope it helps get this message of hope out to more people.

This second video has far higher quality, thanks to a better webcam.  Thank you, Michael!

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LOTTI: Take a vacation from AIDS drugs

July 13, 2009
Basket full of AIDS meds

Wastebasket full of meds

Start memorizing this acronym: LOTTI. It could change your life if you are on one of the AIDS drug cocktails, also known as HAART (highly active anti-retroviral therapy).

LOTTI stands for the LOng Term Treatment Interruption study, which recently reported that those of us who have had success with “treatment interruption” might not be all that unusual.

Although some results from the LOTTI study were first reported back in November, 2008, the complete report wasn’t published in the journal AIDS until April and didn’t hit my radar screen until this month, when it was finally published on Medscape.  In an industry that often falls over itself rushing to trumpet breaking news to the media, this sluggishness to report good news (for people on HAART, if not the pharmaceutical industry) is certainly suspect.

Good News! Drug vacations DO work!

The randomized, controlled, prospective  LOTTI study concludes that those patients who took vacations from their HAART drugs fared as well clinically as those who took their drug cocktail continuously. “The two strategies may be considered clinically equivalent,” stated the study’s authors. Even more importantly (though not emphasized in the report): more than a fourth of those who quit their cocktail of drugs never had to restart them, even though the mean length of time in the study was more than four years!

What is so exciting about this scientifically controlled study is that it offers hope to those who are currently taking anti-retroviral (ARV) drugs, but are concerned about long term effects, or are already experiencing illness because of toxicity. Based on the study’s results, there are not only no good reasons for HAART patients to stay on the drugs continuously and indefinitely, there are several advantages to stopping them: Read the rest of this entry »