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CD4 count going up very slowly
Jun 7, 2000

Hi, first off I want to say what a valuable source this site is. I really don't know if you realize how much a site like this means to people with HIV. I log on everyday and learn something new all the time. With this knowledge and a good doctor I can continue to take good care of myself. I want to thank all that have and will continue to contribute to this site. I have a question about CD4 count. I have been a little nervous because my CD4 count is rising very very slow (In my opinion). I was diagnosed July 1999. Started meds right away. My Doctor, who is a wonderful one at that, was convinced I was infected within the prior 6 months. It made sense because I had a neg. test come back spring of 98. It also made sense because I did have an unsafe sex act during the previous 6 months. Anyway my CD4 was 12% or 109, VL 9,700 in July 99; Aug.99 VL < 50 CD4 14% or 198. My meds were CRix, Nor, Zerit, Ziagen. Too many problems existed, changed in the end of December to Zerit, Ziagen and Sustiva. We overlapped the change of meds to be certain. Jan 30 CD 4 count 170 about 14%. It is now June and just got my last test results; VL still <50 and CD4 18% or 239 also found out my testosterone level is low in the 200's. A year has almost passed and I have never missed a dose of meds by more than 1 hour at the most. I exercise everyday (weights one day and running 5 miles the next) I eat healthy and play sports on a regular basis. I have never had a detectable VL since my first reading in July 99...I have not been sick and continue to work. Do you think the CD count will continue to increase? I read about all these people having CD4 counts in the several hundreds at the end of 1 year and my count worries me. Am I being too nervous? My only current problem is possible neuropathy (not much pain though) some tingling and numbness and a small amount of weight loss in my face. I can deal with that. Zerit has been decreased to 30 mg before my last VL test. I do take L-Carnatine and the other suggested B Vit and a multi vitamin. I think I am doing the right things but am still nervous about the CD4 count..Please give me your thoughts..

Thank you in advance

Response from Dr. Holodniy

A 130 cell and 6% increase after one year is very respectable and consistent across a population of many infected people. The important thing is you are out of the danger zone with respect to developing opportunistic infections. As long as your viral load stays <50, I would expect your CD4 count to increase over time.

MH



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