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Bactrim, is it absolutely necessary
Feb 15, 2004

My girlfriend is HIV+, current CD4 220, viral load 10,000. Doctor recommends starting HAART now because he says if wait until CD4 is 200 or less it will be necessary to also take Bactrim to prevent PCP. Is it absolutely necessary to take bactrim at that stage because I understand HAART should boost CD4. My girlfriend is currently taking colloidal silver, jiangulan tea & ozonated water which are all supposed to help boost the immune system.

Response from Dr. Young

Thanks for your question.

While nothing is absolutely necessary (meaning that the ultimate decision to do any medical intervention is up to the patient), the use of Bactrim or Septra(trimethoprim/sulfa)is a very inexpensive and very well tolerated way to prevent a very serious and sometimes life-threatening infection-- PCP.

Yes, starting HAART should increase your girlfriend's CD4 count, how much and how quickly is difficult to predict, but in my opinion, there's little to be lost by starting Bactrim until her CD4 count is repeated out of the range where she's at risk of having a really serious complication. BY



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