Mar 16, 2002
Thank you for your help. I was infected 4 yrs ago, no meds, cd3positive and cd4 positiv cluster in sept is 1023, 45, cd4 and 8 ratio 1.39, matured t cell was 1986, 78, viral load undectable in may. I am having oral problem and feeling fatigue. shall i have another updated tests? could i be classified as a long term non progressor? shall i start meds. the above tests are increditably expensive in my country and i prefer not to have them done if not necessary.
Response from Dr. Young
Thanks for your question.
I'll assume that you have not started treatments. From what you've described, it would certainly seem that you have a very, very low viral load-- persons like this typically have very slow immune decline; many could be classified as long-term non-progressors.
I'd be curious which country you live in. You might be able to get lab monitoring through a research center. The issue of low-cost monitoring tests for HIV has received some recent attention; some have suggested just using complete blood counts and looking at the total lymphocyte count as a surrogate for the CD4 count. I would think that until we have validated surrogate markers, that I would be getting a CD4 count at least every six months; viral loads probably on a similar time line; though if your viral load continues to remain very low or undetectable, you could reasonably just follow the CD4 count.
Good luck. BY
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