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When to start treatment/
Apr 30, 2010

My brother is surgeon. He has been diagnosed HIV+ recently. He is totally depressed. His CD4 count is 360 and viral load is 60,000. when should he start treatment? In India treatment is started once the count goes below 200, thats what I have been able to find out Please help us.

Response from Dr. McGowan

Thanks for your question.

In the US, current guidelines recommend treatment at CD4 counts of 500 or below. This would mean that your brother should be offered treatment. There are studies that indicate improved survival and less illness if treatment is started sooner. As long as depression would not interfere with his adherence to treatment and he has access to effective and safe medication, it would be advisable to start medication.

Best, Joe



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