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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Questioners not allowed at “HIV Controllers” forum

December 5, 2009

I have probably spent at least ten thousand hours online the last ten years or so and I am still stumbling onto new blogs and websites that deal with HIV and AIDS issues from various perspectives, so I’m pretty familiar with the most common inconsistencies, aka “mysteries”, of the HIV=AIDS hypothesis.  Still, I was taken aback recently when I was told I would not be allowed to participate in, or even monitor a forum for long term survivors like myself, solely because I consider myself an open-minded questioner of the AIDS orthodoxy.

You see,  I recently read a press release at thebody.com about a new forum for “HIV Controllers”, those people who test positive on the antibody test developed by Robert Gallo, the now discredited one-time “discoverer” of the HI virus, but who do not get sick, or perhaps do not even test for a “viral load”, despite not taking any so-called antiretroviral drugs. The press release was from the Zephyr Foundation, founded by 16-year-survivor Loreen Willenberg.

I wanted to know if I fit the category of a HIV controller. I have never had one of the “AIDS-defining” opportunistic infections, though I do have a detectable viral load that bounces around erratically. I have also technically met the definition of “AIDS” by having had a cd4 count of less than 200, three times in 2002, which was the last year I took antiretroviral drugs (ARVs). Lately that count has been averaging about 400, though like the VL, it is also a moving target.
When I first contacted Willenberg about joining the newly announced forum, I shared this same basic history and background to find out if I met the forum’s definition of a HIV Controller. This was her initial response: Read the rest of this entry »


“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.


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 »


Rethinking AIDS Day

April 23, 2009

April 23 is Rethinking AIDS Day. Good thing someone decided such a day is needed, because I’ve been  procrastinating and struggling to write the “AIDS Dissidence 101” post for Open Salon, where I also blog, that several people there have requested for quite some time now. One of the biggest problem I’ve encountered is trying to address the many issues raised by this debate in a format and length that will be read.

I also realized quickly that what I would want to share has already been written elsewhere. There have been more than 50 books written challenging various aspects of the AIDS hypothesis. A list of them can be found at AIDSwiki. In addition, there are at least as many websites, many of them listed on the blogroll on the right.

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THE ROTTED CORNERSTONE: Robert Gallo


When the cause of the first few cases of immune collapse in a handful of gay men was first being examined in the early 1980s, numerous viable theories were considered: infection with cytomegalovirus, the use of amyl nitrite or butyl nitrate poppers, and immune overload from a “fast track” lifestyle that included multiple STDs and prescription drugs, to name a few.

These men were not “previously healthy”, as described by the CDC in the first public announcement of a new immune deficiency in gay men and there are many possible reasons they got sick and died. Research into all possible causes other than a virus were squashed once U.S. Secretary of Health Margaret Heckler announced in 1983 that Robert Gallo had discovered the virus that causes AIDS.

Gallo’s never isolated the virus he claims to have discovered. His research involved mixing lymph tissue from ten gay men with the then known symptoms for AIDS, stimulating them with chemicals in order to get something to grow in cell cultures from leukemia patients! This “soup” became the basis for HIV-antibody tests, diagnoses and treatment1,2

Incredibly, the scientific community never took the time to verify Gallo’s claim then and nearly all subsequent research is built on his word. Gallo has since proven Read the rest of this entry »


The Village Voice buries the bodies

April 3, 2009
Liam Scheff

Liam Scheff

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I’ve recently gotten to know Liam Scheff personally. He is a compassionate man who takes his role as an independent journalist seriously. Now, he has is the focus of attacks by the media because he exposed the painful and horrifying story of forced drug trials on orphans in New York City.

I  am lending my blog to Liam to respond today:


by Liam Scheff

There are at least 200 dead children lying in the wake of the high-dose drug studies done by Columbia Presbyterian on orphans in NYC. The perpetrators won’t release a single medical record, not even to participants.

Children weren’t paid, families weren’t paid, weren’t asked.

The children and infants used in major drug trials were Read the rest of this entry »