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Cousin is being mislead
Dec 12, 2010

My cousin took her hiv meds while pregnant she hadn't had any since then and her son is five years old now, for some reason she thinks she's cured and don't have it anymore because while she was pregnant and taken her meds daily she was undetected but that was then she hasn't had anything since and I know there's no way she's undetectable now and why do she thinks she no longer have this disease? maybe they need to use another word other than undetectable since dummies like her don't understand the meaning, she's having unprotected sex like nothing has ever happened. What can I do? please help!

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Undetectable does not mean "cured" or no longer infected. It merely refers to the fact that the level of HIV replication is below the level of detection of the test being used. HIV-positive folks with undetectable HIV viral loads (like me, for instance) are still HIV infected and capable of passing the infection on to others.

Please show your cousin this post and urge her to check with an HIV physician specialist without delay. Failure to seek care and treatment will ultimately lead to her developing AIDS and dying prematurely. She is also potentially infecting her sexual partners, which is unconscionable. If she doesn't believe you or me, ask her to check with her physician.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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