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Low CD4, Low Viral Load

Oct 21, 2006

I recently had to start meds, but I was a little confused on my lab results. I have always heard that as HIV progresses your CD4 goes down while the viral load goes up. However, I have had the problem of my CD4 decreasing, while my viral load has been low--between undetectable and 1000. My CD4 counts steadily decreased from 564 (this was my first count--I am pretty sure my CD4 percentage was 33% but I am not sure that is accurate) to 214 (CD4 %16). I wasn't sure what it meant--why I still kept a low viral load, but the CD4 count has a clear trend downward.

Response from Dr. Holodniy

Although you had a low level of viral load (and therefore replication) it appears that this virus was able to significantly destroy your CD4 cells. It is not always the case that your viral load has to be really high in order for this to occur.

Question about labs..... Part II

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