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viral load and infection time
Mar 10, 2002

My friend was diagnosed HIV positive only two weeks ago and due to previous testing it was determined that it has been 6 months at the most since he had been infected. His t-cell count was 550 and his viral load was 150,000. What does this mean? Is it possible that this could happen so quickly? What does it mean for the future?

Response from Dr. Holodniy

Acute HIV infection produces very high viral loads. It takes several months for the viral load to come down to a lower level called the set point. If infection occurred within the last 6 months, the acute infection period is probably still active. Every person reacts to the virus differently. Time will determine how good the immune system is in containing viral replication.



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