AIDS Symptoms and Related Diseases
AIDS has many different kinds of symptoms. The average time between
HIV infection and the manifestation of symptoms is 10 years. Then
a combination of non-specific symptoms show up. Symptoms can be
subgrouped (these are symptoms from all stages of AIDS):
- Systemic Symptoms: Fever, dehydration, night sweats,
weight loss (but losing more muscle than fat), low or no appetite,
nausea, vomiting (these lead to wt loss), malabsorption, diarrhea
from infection/parasites, and/or increased metabolic rate.
- Sinopulmonary Disease: Pneumocystis pneumonia, other
infectious pulmary disease, noninfectious pulmonary disease,
- Central Nervous System (CNS) Diseases: Toxoplasmosis,
CNS lymphoma, AIDS dementia, cryptococcal meningitis, HIV myelopathy,
Progressive Multifocal Leukencephalopathy (PML)
- Peripheral Nervous System Disease: Inflammatory polyneuropathies,
sensory neuropathies, mononeuropathies
- Rheumatologic Disease
- Myopathy (muscle disease)
- Oral lesions
- Gastrointestinal: Candidal esophagitis, hepatic disease,
biliary disease, enterocolitis, gastropathy, malabsorption
- Skin: Herpes simplex and zoster, molluscum, staphylococcus,
- Gynecological: Vaginal candida, cervical dysplasia
and neoplasia, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
Research on Alternative and Chinese Medicine Treatments for
It's difficult to study treatments for AIDS because a high percentage
of chronically ill patients drop out... their disease and the
study are usually too demanding for them. Nevertheless, some good
studies exist. Herbs and herb formulas' effects as reported in
studies are mentioned below. Others mentioned below may not have
been studied. In both cases, chinese medical functions may be
mentioned as well.
Chinese Herb Formulas for AIDS Treatment
The most common chinese herbal treatment strategy for AIDS is
Fu Zheng, Supporting the Righteous. That means boosting
the immune system, etc. This is most common because many AIDS
patients are also on western drug cocktails. These drugs take
quite a toll on the body- among other things, they injure the
qi, create phlegm, and cause Liver-Spleen disharmonies. Fu Zheng
therapies can help restore balance.
- HY-1: chai hu, huang qin, ban xia, ren shen, da zao, gan
cao, sheng jiang, huang qi, fang feng. Based on Xiao Chai Hu
T & Jade Wind. Harmonizes Liver and Spleen, Boosts Wei qi
- HY-2: huang qi, fang feng, ren shen, huang jian or ye jiao
teng or he shou wu, yin yang huo, shu di huang. Boosts Yin and
- Milingwang: huang qi, ling zhi, dang shen, bai zhu, gan cao,
shu di huang, sha shen, wu wei z, sheng jiang, da zao, ji xue
teng, tu si zi, shan yao, jie geng, nu zhen zi, bai shao, chen
pi. Boosts bone marrow, RBC, inhibits viruses (polio).
- Resist: huang qi, nu zhen zi, dang shen, shan yao, ji xue
teng, ling zhi, ren shen, bai shao, shu di, wu wei zi, siberian
ginseng, gan cao. Increases red blood cells, white blood cells,
B cells, hemoglobin, and the phagocystic action of leukocytes.
The second most common treatment strategy is Qu Xie, Dispelling
Evil. This is roughly the same strategy that western drug
cocktails use... what is commonly thought of as 'chemotherapy.'
It can also be done with herbs. Sometimes it is even used in concert
with drug therapy.
- HY-3: da qing ye, chai hu, lithospermum, gan cao, chen pi
- HY-4: ban lan gen, zhi zi, blechnum, gan cao, chen pi. To
reduce virus potency, alternate with other Qu Xie formulas to
avoid tolerance, less specific than other forms) - Good for
- single herbs: zi hua di ding, xia ku cao, tian hua fen, huang
lian, jin yin hua, chuan xin lian, niu bang zi, yin yang huo,
zi cao, gou ji, guan zhong, qian li guang
Sometimes, both strategies (Supporting the Righteous and
Dispelling Evils) are used together.
- HY-7: (mod of Qing fei tang, platycodon & fritillaria)
- Ai ye(art annua), chang-shan (dichroa), chai hu, huang lian,
huang bai, xing ren, tian men dong, zhu ru, zhi zi, bei mu,
sheng jiang, fu ling, da zao, gan cao, sang bai pi, mai men
dong, jie geng, wu wei zi, dang gui
(Lung deficiency with
Heat, e.g. Pneumocystis Pneumonia)
- HY-22: (fu zheng & quxie)- huang qi, fang feng, ren shen,
dan shen, ban lan gen, da qing ye, shu di huang, lu jiao jiao,
dang gui, gan cao, tu fu ling, tu si zi, ji xue teng (Circulate
xue, clear heat and toxins)
- HY-27: (mod Anemone Comb) - Anemone, brucea, huang lian, dichroa,
fraxinus, huang bai, sanguisorb, terminalia (Cryptospor) As
- HY-30: zi hua di ding, jin yin hua, yin yang huo, gan cao,
huang qi, ling zhi, nu zhen zi (clr ht, detox, enhance immune
- Enhance: ling zhi, ban lan gen, da qing ye, bai mu er, chuan
xin lian, chen xiang, bai hua she she cao, gou qi zi, dang gui,
xi yang shen, nu zhen zi, shu di, ji xue teng, huang qi, jin
yin hua, yin yang huo, rou cong rong, kun bu, wu wei zi, bai
zhu, dan shen, yu jin, zi hua di ding, chen pi, bai shao, he
shou wu, du zhong, sha ren, gan cao
- "Herb Tea #1" (from a chinese study): huang qi,
wu wei zi, ling zhi, nu zhen zi, dang gui, mai men dong, xia
ku cao, gan cao, da zao, chi shao, chuan san qi, da qing ye,
ci wu jia, tian hua fen, he shou wu, dong chong xia cao. Increased
weight of thymus, IL-2 levels in spleen, antibiotic function
of B cells, Natural Killer cell activities.
How Western and Chinese Medicine Treatments are Combined
- Sometimes western drugs and chinese medicine are used together
to treat the same symptoms. This can allow for a decrease in
the drug dosage. This makes sense since the drugs tend to have
more damaging side effects.
- Drugs and Chinese Medicine together; drugs as chemotherapy
(dispelling) and supporting herbal formula to offset the weakening
effect of toxic drugs.
- Chinese medicine may be used instead of drugs when the patient
isn't strong enough to continue chemotherapy. The patient can
then regain strength. Supporting the Righteous, or combinations
of mostly supporting and some dispelling.
- For symptomatic treatment without drugs. Most commonly with
fever, headache, fatigue, CMV retinitis, wasting syndrome, non-Hodgkin's
There are still gray areas when drugs and herbs are combined.
There are general principles for combining drugs and herbs (see
your health practitioner), and a fair amount of research on specific
herbs and drugs exists. It is important to note that research
has proven that in some cases, the healing effects of drugs and
herbs combined is greater. For more on this topic, read our article
"Are My Drugs and Herbs Dangerous
Together? Drug Herb Interactions."
It is best to have a chinese medicine herbalist and physician
working together. (In California, acupuncturists and herbalists
can order lab tests, but not in most states). Someone will need
to monitor your lab values and know what to expect when herbs
are added to your treatment regimen.
Hopefully, your health care practitioners can cooperate, educate
one another, and work together for your well being. In these days
of cooperative care, any one of your practitioners' refusal to
work with practitioners from other medicines might be grounds
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- The wise and rich experience and counsel of Lynda Harvey-Carter,
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