|hiv-1 and hiv-2
Feb 8, 2006
I have been diagnosed to have hiv-2 what does that mean? What's the difference with hiv-1? And finally what does it mean to have a cd4 count of 588?
Response from Dr. Luzuriaga
HIV-2 is another virus (similar to HIV-1) that can cause immunodeficiency. It is primarily found in individuals in Western Africa and some parts of India. Individuals may acquire HIV-2 alone or can be co-infected with HIV-1. For reasons that we don't fully understand, disease progression occurs much slower in HIV-2 infected individuals than in HIV-1 infected individuals. In addition, transmission to sexual partners and from mothers to their babies is less likely (but can occur). A CD4 count of 588 is quite good; you don't mention your viral load but that would be important to follow, as well. Many therapies used for HIV-1 can also be used for HIV-2. While disease progression due to HIV-2 occurs more slowly than HIV-1, follow-up is important.
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