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Age and CD4 Counts

Dec 29, 2000

Dr. Holodniy, I have a dear friend who is 48 years old and seroconverted this summer (6/00). His initial VL was about 6000, and CD4 350. After HAART, with undetectable VL, his CD4 count rose to the 400's. Although the expected increase, this is still significantly lower than the low normal range, isn't it? Does that suggest that he has been infected longer than 6 months, or that he has a very virulent strain of HIV, or does the CD4 count fall with age? Of course, we don't know his baseline (pre-infection) CD4 count.... Thank you.

Response from Dr. Holodniy

The normal CD4 count in uninfected people can range from 500-1500. It is very hard to date the duration of infection based on CD4 count. Since we don't know the baseline number when this person was uninfected, it could have been 500 or 1500. Starting at 500, it could have taken a couple of years to get to 350, and so on.


Viral load detectable for the first time

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