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Recovery of TCells

Jun 18, 2006

Being a fairly new diagnosed person with HIV I am not quite sure how to ask this but here it goes: I know that HIV destroys TCells and it may wipe out entire groups of TCells that were meant to protect us from certain illnesses. Does a person ever regain part of that group that was wiped out? If not, then I assume it leaves us vunerable to those illnesses even though we may be on medication and show an improvement in TCell count. I also assume that our chances of getting ill are greatly increased even though our TCell count may increase because we dont know which group was wiped out? Did I get this correct? Thank you.

Response from Dr. Holodniy

Patially correct. The more advanced you are with HIV infection, the higher the likelihood you will have significant decline in number and function of CD4 cells. Although certain CD4 clones (a specific cell that reacts to a specific antigen or protein) many be lost at different rates, there appears to be enough recovery that people are no longer at risk for various types of infections after starting HIV treatment and gaining significant CD4 count. We know this by our ability to stop certain antibiotic treatment in people with AIDS who had profound CD4 losses and then recovery after treatment because they don't the serious infections anymore.

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