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best help
Feb 20, 2011

an hello from a small country Bhutan and thanks for the great job Dr. I would like to know that i had unprotected in november 2009 and i had some flu like symptoms 15 days later. I started getting scared and i got my test for all infections which was normal in december first week also my hiv was negative. on March 2010 4 months after unprotected sex i did my first CD4 was 750 cd4 % 28 PVL RNA PCR test- 98. Now i have done the test again in december 8 months after my first cd4 is now 1090 CD4% 27.10 did not do plv again. BUT lastly my CBC lymphocyte was 56%. Is it also true that lymphocyte % drops in an HIV infection instead increase. Please help me i am in distress as i dont have good medical instution here in my country. Am i infected.

with my best wihes for future HIV cure.

Response from Dr. Young

Hello and thank you for your post from Bhutan.

It would appear to me that the single test that you need is a HIV antibody test. CD4s and plasma viral load tests really aren't the idea way to ascertain if you have HIV.

From the information that you have, the RNA PCR is the only hint that you might have HIV infection, but a level of 98 seems suspicious to me. It's unusually low for someone who's not on HIV treatment. And in any event, the viral load test shouldn't be used for diagnostics without an accompanying antibody test.

As for your lymphocyte counts, they can't be used for HIV diagnosis either; yours are essentially normal.

So, based on what you've written, I don't see any clear indicator of HIV infection. I am certain that you should and can get a basic HIV antibody test.

Be well, BY



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