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sore throat/head cold and viral load
Oct 31, 2000

Hello. My boyfriend's viral load is around 50,000, his t cell count about 370 and he's going on a Combivir/Sustiva combo next month. This week he has a sore throat and the symptoms of a head cold that many people are gettig this fall. He's worried that this cold is going to significantly increase his vl and decrease his t-cell count. How badly can a common cold affect him, knowing his numbers and otherwise good health?? Thanks

Response from Dr. Holodniy

There is no data to my knowledge about how the common cold affects these numbers. We do know that serious infections and vaccinations can increase viral load by 2-100 times. However, these are usually transient increases, and most people get back to baseline in about 4 weeks. When people go on HIV therapy, we usually don't see these increases at all. I wouldn't worry and make sure he starts his therapy. MH



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