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My first cd4 count

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You probably have a higher CD4 than your lookalike Robbie Williams.

Be wary of the odd rogue reading. I've been tested about 20 times and a couple of times the CD4 came back very low. I went from 350 to 126 once. Others here in London have had similar experiences. They even lost my VL readings twice. They put these errors down to badly calibrated equipment or even heat exposure to the blood samples. The % is perhaps the most important measure. I was down to 17% but now it's 35%. The range for a healthy person is apparently 30-50%. I asked why no one achieves 90-100%. It has something to do with the immune system fighting other nasties not just HIV.

A 15k VL seems quite low as many have them in the 100s of thousands. You might not need meds for years. It can depend on how long you have had it and your own DNA.

It just goes to show the merits of getting tested as early as possible in order to preserve your existing robust immune system through healthy lifestyle and perhaps meds later.

Good luck Aldous

Hi everyone!

I tested positive on June 10 2006
My lab results are kinda "unique" or unusual according to my doctor....
yea my doctor actually used the word "unique" and I nearly pee'd in my pants :P

My 1st lab (July 4 2006) results:
CD4 = 152
CD4% = 23%
VL = not available yet
ratio = 0.81

2nd lab (July 27 2006) results:
CD4 = 209
CD4% = 30%
VL = 15,000
ratio = 0.83

The normal ranges are:
CD4 500 - 1500
CD4% 32% - 68%
ratio 0.9 - 6.0

The 2 tests above were done by different labs
I know the CD4 count varies daily, but is it possible for the CD4% to vary (by 7%) in 13 days or is it just a fluke in the test results?
The ratio seems pretty constant (0.81 vs 0.83)

Tested -ve in 2001 and prior, so the longest I could have been +ve is 5 years
Is it normal to see such a drastic drop in CD4 count but yet retain almost normal CD4% and ratio(w/o meds)?  and also 15K VL seems quite low compared to most others with CD4 around 200
Does anyone have similar lab results too?

No prior OI (keeping fingers crossed!) and asymptomatic
Took Bactrim (icky) but stopped after 14 days due to a slight rash on body and arms
I am currently treatment naive and enrolled in a 48 weeks Kaletra clinical trial
Will begin my Kaletra/Truvada regime starting tomorrow morning
Wish me luck! :)

Am so NOT looking forward to the side-effects  :P

CD4 of 209 and 30% is a bit weird, but I got used to weird lab results years ago...

Having the test done by different labs could account for the difference. Different people, different assays, different mistakes....

Anyway, your viral load is weedy, which is good

- matt

yea I was quite surprised to learn that my VL is 15,000, thought it would be much higher.
Now I'm hoping that the medication can quickly knock those pesky suckers down to undetectable level so that my CD4 count can improve.  The lab test CD4=152 & 209 scared the shit out of me, its hard enough to deal with finding out that you're +ve and then another bigger blow from the lab results a month later indicating an advance stage of the disease.
Is it true that starting medication with a low CD4 count and low VL will probably have a lower recovery CD4 gain compared to starting medication with a high CD4 and high VL?


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