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IS IT TOO LATE TO START
Jun 16, 2003

Hello Doctor

I tested posative for hiv 4 years ago and have never been to a doctor or have had treatment. I am planning an appointment with a hiv specialist next week. Is it too late to start treatment. Do you think im at risk for aids complications this early?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Im glad you will now be under the care of an HIV specialist. Thats absolutely essential for maintaining your health while cohabitating with HIV.

Is it too late to start treatment? No, not at all. In fact, theres a chance you may not even need treatment yet. The decision when and if to being anti-HIV medications depends on many factors, perhaps the most important being your T-cell (CD4 cell) count. Most guidelines now recommend beginning treatment when your counts drop to the 300 range.

Certainly your next step is to see the HIV specialist and have your blood work checked in particular, your CD4 cell counts and HIV viral load. Your doctor will also take a thorough history and perform a physical examination. With this information, your specialist will be able to advise you if treatment is warranted. And if it is, what options you should consider. Please note The Body does have a whole expert forum dedicated to this subject. I suggest you visit that forum to get some background information prior to your appointment.

Good luck! Stay well.

Dr. Bob


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