|dectable & low tcell- doc says no to meds
Sep 6, 2001
I just tested HIV+ 2 weeks ago. VL is 9105 & T-Cell count is 613, but my Dr does not think that I should start meds now. The postings on this site seem to indicate that meds should be started if there is any detectable VL.
Doc says stress over waiting for test results & depression after could be reason for high counts. I'm getting VL & T counts done again in Oct & Doc just did a Genotype..(results not back yet)
Should I start on meds now?
Response from Dr. Little
There is not a complete consensus on when to start therapy - even among experts in the field. Many people believe that if the T cell count is higher than 350, and the viral load not extremely high, then therapy can be safely delayed. The alternative approach, is to treat more aggressively in an effort to maintain a near-normal immune system and complete viral suppression. I personally do not have one answer, but discuss both of these options with every patient. There are risks and benefits to therapy and what is an acceptable risk and a reasonable benefit is different for different people. In general, I recommend starting therapy for people in your position more often than not, but I would stronly recommend that you have a discussion with your doctor about all of the relevant risks AND benefits which are afforded by potent therapy. Also, your drug resistance tests may help guide your treatment choices if you decide to start.
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