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Blood levels and HIV
Apr 18, 2007

I am 5mnths pregnant and I recently tested positive to HIV.This was after all the other tests for STD's as well as pap smear were done and were clean. My percentage for white blood cells was normal as well as well as red blood cells.Does HIV have any impact on the quantity of blood cells in the body. I was denied a viral load test + CD4 count test because I am pregnant. Is it true that I cannot have these done while pregnant? Please help am worried.

Response from Dr. Daar

HIV can have many different effects on the blood, often being associated with low red blood cells and at time even white blood cells. As you know, the most important measure is the CD4 lymphocyte count and viral load.

Being pregnant should not be a reason to avoid doing a CD4 cell count or viral load. In particular, you should be counseled by an expert in the field regarding starting antiretroviral therapy in order to reduce the risk of transmission to your baby.

I hope this helps. Best, Eric


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