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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
         
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Swollen neck lymph nodes
Sep 15, 2014

Hi I was diagnosed with HIV in May of this year and I know I was infected in December 2013, recently my neck lump nodes have started to swell and I'm really worried that this might worsen and become permanent, my question is what should I expect to happen as I'm extremely worried family and community members will be able to tell before I'm ready to be open about my status. My viral load is 3500 and cd4 450, thank you on advance

Response from Dr. Henry

Swollen lymph nodes are common in HIV infection (much of the HIV in the body and the body's immune response to HIV is found in the lymph nodes). Other causes of lymph node swelling in various body regions are common and vary by regions. Lymph nodes in the neck drain from the ear, mouth, pharynx, tonsils and other body tissues in that area so swelling can be due to clinical problems/infections/allergies in those areas. I recommend an assessment by your HIV or primary care provider to determine if the neck gland enlargement merits any further work up and the likelihood that the enlargement is due to HIV alone and whether it is likely to be noticeable to non medical people you come in contact with. KH


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