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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
           
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irreversable damage from hiv??
May 17, 2006

Hello! This is a wonderful website and thank you so much for answering so many hard questions. I was reading about acute hiv treatment and possible benefits, including the prevention of irreversable damage to lymph tissue in the gi tract and other places. I am newly diagnosed as hiv positive, and wonder what damage I can resonably assume has already taken place in my body which will probably not return/heal regardless of treatment or even a future cure. Do you have an opinion/facts on this concern? Thank you so much!

Response from Dr. Henry

If you have been infected for > 1-3 months then starting treatment may not fully reverse damage throughout your body (such as lymphoid tissue damage in your gut and other lymph nodes) since the early immediate damage can be very extensive. That being said most patients do well on without treatment as long as their CD4 count remains above some level like 350. Once treatment is started at a CD4 count in that range most patients have a robust recovery in their immune function which is good enough to protect them against HIV-related conditions. KH



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