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Drastic Viral Load Increase
Nov 19, 2011

I have been positive for 25 years. I have been in very good health all this time. I am fortunate that I have not been on HIV medications. My labs recently are as follows. In Dec my CD4/900 -VL/1,100 In May CD4/663 - VL/54,200 In August CD4/683 - VL/35,000 And Nov CD4/600 - VL/323,950. The viral load is all over the place! I did have shingles the first time in Dec 2010 and very short lived, only 3 weeks. I started on testosterone in January because levels were very low. What do you make of it. I am retesting the last viral load one more time.

Response from Dr. Holodniy

I would be curious to know what your CD4 percent is doing and whether there was any recent other infection or vaccination that could explain the viral load increase. That is a rather dramatic increase in viral load, and is well above any assay variation. If the CD4 percent is decreasing, despite the consistent CD4 count, then the increase in viral load could be real. If the repeat shows that level of viral load and no other medical conditions are ongoing, you may want to consider HIV treatment.



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