Love Forever

by Nels P. Highberg

In 2016, standing in front of the painting Love Forever by Boris Torres, I first saw their lipodystrophy, the redistribution of fat on the body, a side effect of the early antiretroviral medications created in the mid-1990s to combat the effects of HIV disease was. Look at the bulges on the back of their necks and the proportion of the stomach on the man at the left compared to the rest of his body. I knew men who lived with this, and it was nothing compared to the horrific side effects of AZT years earlier (e.g., anemia, cardiomyopathy, numbness in the hands and feet). Antiretrovirals offered the first signs that it might be possible to actually live with HIV. Still, lipodystrophy became another way living with HIV that marked the body. Continue reading “Love Forever”

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