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Zero viral load
Apr 13, 2014

I have been taking Isentress and Truvada since 2008. According to my Infectious Disease doctor, my latest viral load is zero. How can this be true? I have tested HIV+ twice. Also, FYI: I developed severe pain in my hands and feet. Without my doctor's permission or knowledge, I decreased the Truvada dose by half (taking one pill every other day) and I no longer have any pain in my hands and feet.

Response from Dr. Henry

HIV level less than the standard detection level (often < 50 copies) is often termed undetectable (fancy research tests can often find a very low level of HIV RNA in that situation such as 1-2 copies/ml). The HIV antibody test remains positive in that situation. I would inform your doctor about your hand and foot pain (unlikely but possible to be due to the Truvada) and your dose adjustment. KH



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