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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Lymph Nodes Swollen
Jul 12, 2002

My husband has been diagnosed with HIV almost 2 months ago now. He does not know when he got it. The only symptom that he has had for about a year is swollen lymph nodes. But in the last month he has noticed so many more. He has about 6-10 of them all over his neck . They are all fairly big and they are starting to bother him somewhat. Can you tell me the stage of HIV he is in more or less and what are the treatments for it- And can they be dangerous. Thank you

Response from Dr. Henry

It is sometimes tough to interpret the meaning of swollen nodes in the setting of HIV infection. Sometimes it is a good sigh that the immune system is active (they also swell sometimes when effective treatment is started). Swelling can also indicate the presence of other HIV-related infections (such as TB or atypical TB) that needs to be evaluated if other clues are present. Knowing your CD4+ T-cell count is useful in interpreting why the nodes may be swollen (if that is available to you). Most of the time swollen nodes are a part of the natural history of HIV infection and are not by themselve a cause for concern but a medical evaluation is recommended. KH

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