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newly diagnosed and know nothing
Oct 25, 2005

I was recently diagnosed with HIV when I ended up in the hospital with PCP. My cd4 count was 52. I am figuring I had it since my daughter's father 8 years ago (luckily she is negative). I went for a check up with my HIV Dr and within 3 weeks of taking the medication, my cd4 count was up to 299. My vl was 1900. What are the chances I can get my cd4 count up higher? Also, do you think I have a chance of seeing my children grow into adults as long as I take my meds and do what my Dr says?

Response from Dr. Frascino


None of us has an infallible crystal ball that allows us to absolutely predict the future. But what I can tell you is that:

1. You have had a robust response to your antiretroviral medications so far (CD4 count increasing from 52 to 299 within three weeks), which is a very encouraging sign.

2. Your viral load is low (1900) and, although you don't mention what it was at the time of diagnosis, I presume this has fallen dramatically on your HAART. This is also a very good sign.

Your best chance at longevity is to work closely with an HIV/AIDS specialist and to be highly adherent to your medication regimen, i.e. try not to miss any disease. That plus a positive attitude about being positive are your best weapons in coping with HIV/AIDS. Take some time to review the information on this site and related links. I think you'll find it both enlightening and encouraging. For instance, try the information in the "Quick Links" section on The Body's homepage. Click on the "Just Diagnosed" and "Inspiring Stories" topics.

I've been HIV positive since January 1991. Let's plan on growing old together, O.K.?

Good luck.

Dr. Bob

lower cd4 counts, always tired
Hope your brother gets well soon!

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