Recreational drugs can

interact with

your HIV medication

USING RECREATIONAL DRUGS

What you need to know

What you need to know

If you choose to take recreational drugs, it’s important to be upfront with your healthcare team to make sure you are aware of the impact the drugs can have on your health and how they might interact with your HIV medication.

If your HIV medication requires the use of a chemical in it called a ‘booster’ you should speak to your healthcare team about your recreational drug use because:

  • Boosters increase the effectiveness of your HIV medication but they can also interact with other medicines, such as recreational drugs
  • They can boost recreational drugs (such as ketamine, crystal meth and MDMA) to a dangerous extent

As new recreational drugs become available, it is difficult to predict the potential interactions – that’s why it’s important to be upfront with your healthcare team about your drug use.

Protect others and yourself

Protect others and yourself

Always use your own clean equipment if you are injecting drugs; do not share a needle, spoon or equipment with others as this can be dangerous for you and the people you are sharing with:

  • There is a risk of passing on HIV to others
  • There is a risk that you can be infected with a different strain of HIV or another infection such as hepatitis B or C
Talk to your healthcare team

Talk to your healthcare team

You might feel uncomfortable talking to your healthcare team about the recreational drugs you’re using, but they are very used to having these conversations.

It is safer to tell them so they can identify any impact on your treatment and overall health and wellbeing. Ultimately the best way to lower your risk is to cut down on the amount of recreational drugs you’re using, and eventually stop altogether. Talk to your healthcare team about what you can do if you do decide to stop.