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PAP SMEAR-CELL CHANGES
Oct 20, 2002

DR DOCTOR ABERG,

MY FRIEN IS HIV + HER LAB WORKS ARE AS FOLLOWS: OCT. 2001 (CD4-570 VL-510) JAN.2002 (CD4-559 VL-1180) JULY 2002 (CD4-780 VL-1980)

HER PAP SMEAR RESULT LAST NOV. 2002 IS NORMAL, AND TODAY HAR DOCTOR CALLED HER FOR RE ASSESSMENT OR RETEST OF PAP SMEAR BACUASE THERE'S A CELL CHANGES. IS IT A CANCER OR WHAT? IT BE THE RESULT OF HIV, WHAT IS THE RELATION OF THAT REAULT TO HIV. I AM SCARED FOR HER, SHE IS MY BEST FRIEND. CAN YOU TELL ME HOW IS HER IMMUNE SYSTME DOING WITH THAT NUMBERS I GAVE YOU? WHEN DO YOU THINK SHE WILL START MEDICATIONS? DO YOU THINK HIV + PEOPLE CAN LIVE LONGER LIVE THE PEOPLE W/ OUT HIV. CAN IT BE LIKE DIABETES THAT PEOPLE COULD LIVE TO IT'S FULLEST.PLS. ANSWER ME...

Response from Dr. Aberg

Your friend is doing quite well. Her CD4 count is high and she has a low level of virus. Many people with HIV live 10-20 years even without therapy, so we really do not know how long people may live given all the new therapies we have to offer. I am not one to compare disease but HIV is becoming a progressive disease that can be managed if one has access to care and therapy. No one can predict outcomes but I suspect your friend may not need therapy for a long time. She should continue to monitor her CD4 count and viral load about every 4 months.

I do not have enough information to comment about the PAP smear results. Sometimes, we see some atypical cells or inflammatory cells that resolve spontaneously. She should have a repeat PAP to see if she really has any cellular changes which could be precursors to cancer. Write back if you find out the actual report on the PAP and I will be happy to explain what those results may mean.


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