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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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CD8 Function
Mar 14, 2012

I have had HIV for 12 years, with an undetectable VL and a raw CD4 number of 650-700 since inception. I was put on HAART immediately which had no effect on my numbers i.e. I remained undetectable with a raw CD4 number in the 650-700 range. My CD4:CD8 Ratio has been normal in the .98 range, however, over the course of the last year, I have experienced a large increase in my CD8 Abs Suppressor to a current result of 1400. This has pushed my CD4:CD8 ratio out of the normal range. I remain undetectable with a raw CD 4 number of 658. I understand that HIV infected individuals often express an increase in CD8s and initially a decrease in CD4 until post HAART, however I have only experienced an increase in CD8s and only very recently while on ART. Does this imbalance including the lower ratio reflect a poorer immunological picture for me given my Abs CD 4 and VL? And if so what can I do to lower my CD8 number?

Response from Dr. Henry

Excellent question for which I dont have a firm idea of clinical implications. I have a modest number of patients who have experienced the same trend in CD8 cells while otherwise doing well on ART. If any reader knows of a useful published reference please post. KH

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