They said that the anti retroviral (ARV) therapies have kept them alive but have suffered some of the worst side effects of the ARVs. The drugs prescribed for the treatment of AIDS usually consists of a combination off ARVs. All these drugs have different toxicity levels and vary depending on the disease and the individual's immune status. The side effects of the drugs are as deadly as the disease. Kidney stones, a heart attack, depression, loss of bowel control and organ failure are some of the common but fatal side effects that an AIDS patient undergoing treatment suffers.
John Sauriol a long-term survivor said that most of them are working to keep themselves fit and healthy. The side effects are so debilitating that patients who undergo treatment do not have the same quality of life as that of their peers. Though the number of patients infected with AIDS continues to survive for a longer duration their quality of life is greatly reduced.