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CD4 count
Apr 9, 2007

Dear Forum Expert, when i was first diagonised with HIV, in Oct 2004, my CD4 count was 90. I immediately started HAART. After 6 months of therapy, the CD4 count increased to 190, then 210 after ten months. Since then, it has been fluctuating between 210 and 260. Is there any extra medication that can boost my CD4 count to near the normal count or what can i do to boost my CD4? Bernard

Response from Dr. Daar

Hi Bernard,

Everybody experiences a different increase in CD4 cells after initiating effective antiretroviral therapy. In general, as long as viral loads remain undetectable it probably is not that important how high CD4 cells go. In fact, many will experience a gradual increase over years so it is difficult to even know where they will end up.

There are subtle differences in CD4 increases seen with different antiretrovirals, such as greater increases with abacavir or tenofovir than zidovudine and possibly greater increases with lopinavir/ritonavir than efavirenz. That said, there is little data suggesting that these differences are clinically important. For now I would continue to take your medications consistently, be monitored closely and intermittently discuss your progress with your provider to make sure everything is on track. You should do great!! Best, Eric


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