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Consequences of not starting meds?
Jul 2, 2005

Hi posative for 16 years recent CD4 250 (14%)no VL undertaken for over 6 months!! Hospital say not enough blood taken. They have now taken blood for VL test but not back yet.

Meanwhile Doc recommneds I start treatment and has given me some meds(Abacavir/Lamivudine/Atazanavir/Ritonavir)but am afraid to start. Bearing in mind the above CD4 counts what are the consequences if I dont take the meds and leave things as they are?

Response from Dr. Pierone

If you are not ready to start now, then you should not start now (but begin preparing yourself). The risk of a short-term complication from HIV infection is low at 250 CD4 cells. If the count drops below 200, then the studies show a lower risk of AIDS-related complications and death with HAART. There is probably benefit from starting HIV medications in the CD4 200 to 350 range, but definitive data are not available. Once you know the viral load this may help in the decision. A viral load over 100,000 is associated with a greater risk of progression to AIDS and complications. Good luck and let us know how things go.



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