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Can I hold off on med's a while longer?
Jun 29, 2012

My lab's came back yesterday. After five years of maintaining hight cd4's, 400-700,yet with high viral count, 35,000, plus my report stated that my cd4 is now 361 and viral count is 1,150.000....that's one million!!! I have not even had a cold in five years, only ill during the sero...I have never felt/looked healthier. No drugs, 4 drinks a week, no cig's, workout alot, sleep real good and super nutrition. Can I hold off a little longer before I go on med's? Also, in my case which med's would be most effective with this high viral load? I'm looking for something with very little hassle/and minimal side effects, ie bloated stomach, fat redistribution, etc. Thank you, Mike

Response from Dr. Young

Hello Mike and thanks for posting.

It's reassuring that you're feeling well, but with your borderline CD4 count and very (very) high HIV viral load, if you were my patient, I would be recommending treatment. That high viral load is predictive of rapid decline of your CD4s, and eventually, your health.

Since you've made efforts for all those other preventive health issues (exercise, non-smoking, good diet), it would seem inconsistent to simply wait to let HIV cause illness before starting on medications. It would also be worth stating that that viral load makes the possibility of transmission of HIV to others greatly higher.

Regarding medications, all of our current medications are very well tolerated in the large majority of people who take them. Nearly all are once-daily, two regimens offer one pill daily options. The real issue is to match your lifestyle and medical background (heart, lung, bone, liver, kidney issues, for example) to the profiles of the medications.

I hope that's helpful. Feel free to write back anytime. BY

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