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ALC count

Oct 6, 2003

When at the doctors during my last visit he said that my absolute lymph count was 1270. Is this a good or bad thing? Thank you.

Response from Dr. Pierone

It is really not a good or bad thing. CD4 lymphocytes are a subset of total lymphocytes and both tend to decline in the natural course of HIV infection. We follow CD4 lymphocytes in HIV infection to determine when to start therapy and response to treatment. There are some studies that have looked at monitoring absolute lymphocyte count only as a surrogate for CD4 counts in resource limited settings that don't have access to the lab equipment for measurement of CD4 cells. Higher total lymphocyte counts predict better CD4 cells. If one has access to CD4 lymphocyte counts there does not seem to much gained by following total lymphocyte counts.


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