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New and still learning about all this

Jan 12, 2001

Dear Dr. I was diagnosed early last fall with a viral load of 91,000 and t-cells of 750. I had a negative test in May of 2000, so I know my contraction of HIV occurred sometime in 2000. I was immediately placed on Sustiva and Combivir. After two months my viral load dropped to 750 and my t-cells were unchanged. In the two months since then my viral load has only dropped to 250. My doc had indicated previously he thought I would be undetectable by now. I am not tolerating the Sustiva and Combivir well. I also take very large doses of Depakote and Tegretol for a seizure disorder I've had for some time. I am extremely compliant and have only missed one dose in four months. Another little complication occurred in December when I was diagnosed with HPV in my colon and a pre-cancerous lesion which was removed. Anyway, my doc thinks I should continue with my present regimen and told me I should be satisfied if I can keep my viral load in its current range. I probably would, except I am almost incapacitated by the side effects. What do you think?

Response from Dr. Holodniy

I think you will still see a decrease in viral load. In some patients it may take 6 months or longer to get to < 50.


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