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Author Topic: test results: what is high? what is low?  (Read 2086 times)

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Offline schnitzer

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test results: what is high? what is low?
« on: August 03, 2006, 01:43:05 AM »
can someone explain to me what is a optimal test result?

cd4: what is the lowest, what is the highest? what is the okay point?

viral load: what is too high? what is undetectable?

how are these things measured? per every cm2 of blood??

Offline allopathicholistic

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Re: test results: what is high? what is low?
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2006, 02:06:39 AM »
Hi schnitzer: This page is good for you CLICK HERE
Please read the whole page. It will also link you to:
"Understanding Your T-cell Test" <-- This page also talks about percentage so be sure not to skip that part. It's important
"Understanding Your Viral Load Test"
"Understanding Your Complete Blood Count (CBC) Test"
"Understanding Your Chem-Screen (CS) Test"

Offline newt

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  • the one and original newt
Re: test results: what is high? what is low?
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2006, 03:49:08 AM »
A normal CD4 starts at 400-600 depending on which country you're in (for example in India 400 is bottom limit of normal on a population level) and your gender. 300 or more is functional.  200 or less is starting to get non-functional and puts you at greater risk of opportunistic infections.  200 is the lowest level doctors recommend you let your CD4 count fall to before stating treatment. 

In % terms, a normal CD4 % (CD4 cells as a proportion of all lymphocytes) starts at 30-40%. A CD4 % of 13% roughly equals a CD4 count of 200.  This is important to note cos you can have a CD4 % of 13% and have a higher CD4 count.  CD4 count varies by time of day etc so the % may be a better long-term indicator of what your CD4s are doing.

A viral load of 50,000 to 100,00 (log 4.7 to 5) is considered high.  A viral load of 50 (log 1.7) or less is considered undetectable.

Both CD4 and viral load are measured per millilitre (mL) or cubic millimetre (mm3) of blood.

- matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline ipositive

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Re: test results: what is high? what is low?
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2016, 03:52:33 AM »
@newt My VL report says "Less than 66 copies/ml"

What would that mean? Also instead of having a result which says "Less than xx c/ml" if i wanted to know how many copies/ml are actually present , what should i ask the lab for?

Offline JimDublin

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Re: test results: what is high? what is low?
« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2016, 05:44:49 AM »

This is a inactive thread from 2006 so a decade ago and the poster was last active on May 27, 2015. Next time open a new topic instead  ;)

You are never going to have a report that counts all the HIV copies in your complete system/blood as its just a sample size and not an absolute count.

Less than 66 copies/ml is great ask the lab if your unsure some labs publish reports differently but to me this reads that in your sample they detected less than 66 copies per ml.

To be honest this is more a question that as example Mike or Leatherman could answer in detail.

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Offline bocker3

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  • You gotta enjoy life......
Re: test results: what is high? what is low?
« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2016, 07:58:13 AM »
@newt My VL report says "Less than 66 copies/ml"

What would that mean? Also instead of having a result which says "Less than xx c/ml" if i wanted to know how many copies/ml are actually present , what should i ask the lab for?

"less than 66 copies/ml" is a result that I have never seen.  My lab currently has a sensitivity limit of 20 copies.

Generally, when a lab reports a quantitative test as "< some number" it is because the test used is only accurate down to that number.  So, in your case, the test may have "counted" 0 or 9 or 65 copies of the virus, but it can't report that actual number based on the sensitivity of this test.  66 is the lowest number that can be reported in this instance.

So -- what does your result mean?  It means that you have somewhere between 0 and 65 copies/ml of blood.  Some labs do now report "Detected" or "Not Detected".  If you have your actual lab report - look for those phrases.  If "Not Detected" - then the test did not detect any viral copies -- keep in mind that if the test's sensitivity is 66, this "Not Detected" still is not 100% reliable.

There are tests available that are very sensitive -- I think one goes down to 2 copies/ml (not sure if any exist with sensitivity down to 0).  These tests are very expensive and offer no additional  clinical information for you or your doctor.  They are primarily utilized in research.

Hope that helps.

Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
Nov05 288/18%  47,564
Current Labs
May2015 969/28% <20


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