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WBC drop and AZT
Oct 16, 2002

Hi Dr Robert. I had a possible exposure to HIV 2 weeks ago. I started PEP 27 hours later (combivir). My baseline WBC was 9.2k/cmm After 15 days they are 4.7k/cmm. Hb and Ht still normal. Meanwhile I had aspecific symptoms (sore throat, enlarged laterocervical lymph, fatigue but not fever). Can AZT be the cause of this drop? Please, answer soon because I am really freaking out. Thanks

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Yes, AZT can cause a decrease in white blood cell counts. It can also cause decreased red cells. You started PEP within the recommended time frame. You have an excellent chance of remaining seronegative, but will need routine follow-up testing out to 6 months, the recommended time for very significant exposures. Your physician should monitor your blood counts closely over the remaining 2 weeks of your PEP therapy. Good luck.

Dr. Bob


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