Question regarding WBC and CD4
Sep 16, 2012
I am HIV+ and have been on Atripla since 2010. Since I tested positive my white blood cell count has been low, around 2.0 when I initially tested positive. With treatment it has increased to its current level of 3.9.
My CD4 count has fluctuated and is currently 478 with a CD4 % of 42. My CD4/CD8 ratio is 1.1
All other blood tests are in the normal range. Is there any real significance in having a low WBC?
Response from Dr. Holodniy
Although your WBC is outside the normal range, it is just barely. The significance is multifold. A low WBC, resulting in a low neutrophil count (usually < 500 and referred to as neutropenia) puts people at significant risk of all sorts of infections (some HIV-associated, some not). A low WBC can also be the result of a low total lymphocyte count (which can be HIV-associated or not) leading to low CD4 counts among other cell types and the resultant opportunistic infections. There are many causes including infections, cancers, drugs, among others that can result in decreased production of these cells in the bone marrow.
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