Tina and HIV
Tina and seroconversion
Tina and meds
Monitor the liver
Our liver helps clean our bodies of toxins. The more drugs
we ingest, prescription and otherwise, the greater work our
livers have to do to process them. This stress can lead to
liver damage and greater susceptibility to hepatitis. For
HIV+ men who may need to maintain drug treatment for many
years, protecting the health of our liver is paramount. It
is a good idea to have our doctors monitor our liver functions
regularly to check for indicators of liver stress. It is also
a good idea to protect ourselves from hepatitis infection,
get tested regularly for Hepatitis, and to get vaccinated.
Vaccinations are available for types A and B.
HIV meds can increase the levels and effects of Tina
Some HIV meds are cause for specific concern. They multiply
the effect of crystal meth in the bloodstream. These meds
compete with Tina in enzyme pathways and don’t allow
Tina to leave our system as easily. Protease inhibitors in
particular need to be emphasized in this regard. Amprenavir
(Agenerase) and Ritonavir (Norvir, Kaletra) increase the amount
of Tina in our bloodstream by 2 or 3 times. This can give
us either a stronger or cheaper high. It also puts us at significantly
greater risk of overdose.
The following HIV medications increase the levels and effects
• protease inhibitors (especially ritonavir and amprenevir)
• itraconazole, ketaconazole (anti-fungals)
• erythromycin, clarithromycin, azithromycin (antibiotics)
If you are on any of these drugs it is recommended that
you check with our doctors to learn more.
Be alert to any changes in your high after we start a new
HIV medication. Do you feel ‘higher,’ stay up
longer, have more paranoia, or crash harder? These experiences
could signal drug interactions. Tell your doctor about them.
Tina can impact the efficacy of our HIV meds
The specific impacts of crystal meth use on the effectiveness
of specific HIV meds are not well known. The quality and ingredients
in the Tina we use varies from batch to batch and it’s
difficult to carry out research on illegal substances.
We do know that guys often have a harder time maintaining
their meds schedule when using. Missing doses because of Tina
use could allow our viral loads to increase and provide a
‘window’ for drug resistance to develop. Remember
that when we become resistant to one drug in a class, we are
usually then resistant to all other drugs in the same class.
There are currently only 4 major classes of drugs. The complications
resulting from becoming resistant to one or more classes of
drugs can be significant on many aspects of our lives.
Do whatever it takes to maintain adherence to your prescription
schedule. Make sure you have your meds with you. Have food
like a meal replacement bar available for meds that need to
be taken with food. Some guys find bananas and yoghurt sit
relatively well in our stomachs when high. It’s easy
to lose track of time. Use a timer. Remember that a break
is a good idea anyway. Investigate options like newer meds
that require less frequent intake with your doctor.
If you’re going to use tina anyway, reduce the risk:
• Use half or less than you would otherwise.
• Delay second or subsequent hit.
• Consider switching to a drug that has less potential
• Switch to a less risky method of use.
• Be more careful with the screening of the Tina you
• Use less often.
Other potential interactions
It also may be important to monitor kidney function and in
particular to be on the alert for kidney stones. Tina and
some HIV meds cause a cumulative dehydration that can lead
to severe kidney stones. Drinking lots of water is recommended.
out the ‘Kidney Page’
for more information and tips.
Caution is also recommended when taking Tina in conjunction
with mono anamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). MAOIs include
harmine, harmaline, harmala, nardil, parnate, moclebemide,
as well as many anti-depressants. When combined with crystal
meth, MAOIs can cause fever, hypertension, and arrhythmias
(abnormal heart rhythms). Check with your doctor to determine
if any medication you are taking contains MAOIs.
Heart and blood pressure medications can also interact with
Tina and have adverse effects.
we use other illegal and/or prescription drugs in combination
with Tina and our HIV meds, there are further complications
and dangers. To learn more please click
While the focus in harm reduction information is often on
pharmaceutical interactions with crystal meth and other drugs,
there may also be issues with herbal or nutritional supplements
as well. Regardless of who our health care providers are,
we advise informing them of our drug consumption, prescription
and otherwise. Naturopaths, herbalists and nutritionists can
then also advise on immune boosting and nutritional supplementation
that may mitigate some of the damage caused by Tina and other