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Is the HIV treatment necessary now?
Jun 4, 2000

A Thai young man, was found for the first time to have 2410 copies/ml in his HIV viral load in May 1999, and 1280 copies/ml in May 2000 at the same laboratory using the same method, Amplicor PCR Diagnostics. He has never taken any anti-virus drugs at all, and has not yet been treated either. His health in general is better now than last year. He has gained 5 kg, and has a couple of questions as follows: 1. Is the decrease in his viral load normally possible? 2. Is the treatment now necessary? What are the drugs of your choice? AZT and Videx are available in Thailand.

Response from Dr. Dieterich

1. There really is no decrease in viral load, those numbers are the same and they are low viral loads.

2. If the CD4 cells are above 350, most people would not start treatment with a low viral load like that. If the viral load goes above 10-20,000 or the T-cells drop below 350 then you should start for sure. Good Luck and get those T-cells checked! DTD



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