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starting ARV's next week
Jul 21, 2008

Dear Dr. Young, We are the U.K couple again.Thank you very much for your answer to our question in this forum(July 14,'very low CD4 count'). My partner is continuing his septrin meds. and thankfully he is recovering from his PCP pneumonia. He will start ARV's (hopefully) next week - and he really needs to , with his CD4 count of 6. My question is about the latest results - his viral load which has just come back as 50,000. We both thought it would be in the hundred's of thousands. Is it good news that his viral load is 50,000??.

Response from Dr. Young

Good to hear from you again.

All the viral load does is predict the rate of CD4 decline; having a low CD4 count is generally associated with higher viral loads; but even a load level of HIV can cause CD4 decline (and AIDS).

It used to be better to have a lower viral load (with regard to treatment), but currently deployed treatments are generally as effective in persons with high- and low viral loads.

Best of luck to your partner,

BY



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