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Newly diagnosed and Rotten Numbers
Jun 14, 1999

Hi Doctor Mark!

Six weeks ago i tested HIV+ both with ELISA and Western Blot. Was then given CD4 and Load tests which came back T-cell count 194, and a Load of 68K. My questions are: 1) can the ELISA test ever give false negatives; I tested Negative 3/95 and 9/96.....if not then I was most likely exposed last summer which means that I've had a very fast progression to AIDS. 2) Could the fact that I was a heavy user of Cocaine and Heroin last summer have contributed to this quick onset?? (I've now been in recovery for over eight months) 3) I only sniffed: are there any cases of exposure to HIV via sharing of bloodied straws?? 4) Could my numbers be indicitive of repeated exposure to HIV and will the Geno/Pheno test give us any answers?? Thanks so much for you interest and concern for all of us out here!!!

Response from Dr. Holodniy

1) yes, but only really during acute infection (first 8 weeks or so); 2)possibly. there is indirect evidence of altered immune function with those drugs; 3)Not to my knowledge; 4) Possibly, but a geno/phenotypic test will only show evidence of drug resistance, not the presence of multiple strains. MH



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