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Author Topic: Hello  (Read 2927 times)

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Offline twz90s

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  • Posts: 13
Hello
« on: July 17, 2009, 03:06:46 AM »
Hello everyone.  I'm a 27 year old guy.

I just tested + on June 1, 2009.  I have never had an HIV test in my life before this.  I found out from a urine sample that an insurance company ran when my partner and I were applying for a life insurance policy.  Later it was confirmed by a blood test a Doctor ordered.

Long story short is I went to the B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS in Vancouver, British Columbia.

My first set of blood tests showed a 960 viral load and 360 CD4.  My Doctor said I am a Long-term Nonprogressor (Delta-32 Heterozygotes) and have had HIV for years, but it was getting to the point that I will be on HAART soon.  She expects HAART to work extremely well in my situation and will pick up the little bit of slack that my immune system is leaving - she expects my immune system to return to almost normal levels indefinately.  

The surprising situation is my partner of 9 years is confirmed negative in spite of years of unprotected sex.  There will be another test in about 2 months just to be sure he's not in the midst of Seroconversion, but the Doctors feel pretty comfortable that he's negative. Obviously in spite of this, we've switched to condoms.

I think I picked it up when I was 17 or 18 and experimenting unsafely, plus that was the last time I was with another man before our releationship.

All in all I feel fantastic and very optimistic in spite of the virus.

Anyone with some insight into my situation?

Thanks and I am very much looking forward to being apart of this community.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2009, 04:17:18 AM by twz90s »

Offline webontheweb

  • Member
  • Posts: 110
Re: Hello
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2009, 07:16:49 AM »
hmm,  well everyone has a different story.  Welcome to the club,  it is one that almost no one wants to join, but once in the water, we are friendly and eclectic group.  Find a buddy, mentor or HIV partner to help guide you through the first year.  You will have a lot of questions and it is easier to find somebody experienced to answer questions.
Good luck on treatment.  You will be just fine!
Cheers

Offline sdguyloveslife

  • Member
  • Posts: 134
Re: Hello
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2009, 12:54:06 PM »
I just tested + on June 1, 2009.  I have never had an HIV test in my life before this.  I found out from a urine sample that an insurance company ran when my partner and I were applying for a life insurance policy.  Later it was confirmed by a blood test a Doctor ordered.

Sorry to hear you've just found out you're positive.  I just found out a couple months ago and it's been quite an adjustment to say the least...but just know that everything is going to be fine.  You've already made some great progress by getting yourself hooked into medical care.   

My first set of blood tests showed a 960 viral load and 360 CD4.  My Doctor said I am a Long-term Nonprogressor (Delta-32 Heterozygotes) and have had HIV for years, but it was getting to the point that I will be on HAART soon.  She expects HAART to work extremely well in my situation and will pick up the little bit of slack that my immune system is leaving - she expects my immune system to return to almost normal levels indefinately.  

I understand this can all be confusing when you have your first few appointments and they're throwing all sorts of terms and numbers at you.  However, there are several contradictions in what you've written here - contradictions in HIV science - in other words, your scenario, as written here, does not mesh very well with today's knowledge of HIV.  Some might think you're trying to "bullsh*t" us.  Rather than "pick apart" all the contradictions, I'm just going to suggest that you might want to bring a notepad with you to your next appointment and get clearer on your situation and the terminology. 

I think I picked it up when I was 17 or 18 and experimenting unsafely, plus that was the last time I was with another man before our releationship.
Do you really think that being with that man was the ONLY other place you could have "picked it up?"  I hope you don't expect us to believe that!  If so, I'll tell you now from experience that the "veil of denial" might be great now, but it eventually stops working. 

Anyone with some insight into my situation?
You've written several things here that just do not add up or don't make sense.  I trust that you just misunderstood all the terms that have been thrown at you by the doctor over the last 6 weeks.  Good thing is that you've found a great resource and as you browse this board, you will learn everything from how HIV infects and progresses to how to cope when your whole world feels like it's falling apart. 

Thanks and I am very much looking forward to being apart of this community.
Welcome!  Happy you found this place! 
Do not condemn the judgment of another because it differs from your own. You may both be wrong.

Offline Luke

  • Member
  • Posts: 291
Re: Hello
« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2009, 01:28:09 PM »
twz90s

No insights to offer - just a welcome ;)

Do you really think that being with that man was the ONLY other place you could have "picked it up?"  I hope you don't expect us to believe that!  If so, I'll tell you now from experience that the "veil of denial" might be great now, but it eventually stops working. 

sd,

I think maybe you need to slow down a little, because nowhere did he state that there was only one man. All it actually says is that a phase of unsafe experimentation (which could be with any number of men) was the last time he was with a man prior to starting his current relationship, with someone who has now tested negative. That isn't at all implausible.

Offline twz90s

  • Member
  • Posts: 13
Re: Hello
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2009, 02:07:35 PM »
Wow, thanks for the "welcome" SD.

I seriously have better things to do than to "bullsh*t" a bunch of people on forums that I don't even know.  Maybe you should suggest I get a second opinion or something instead of being so passive aggressive.  I'm in the medical profession and didn't misinterpret what she had said.  I also did secondary research based on what she had told me.  Perhaps you're a little more used to "I'm so scared and confused" posts on here rather than a more optimistic insertsion into this world?

Everyone else, thanks for your welcome, but I'm seriously considering a different forum on my second post...

Offline sdguyloveslife

  • Member
  • Posts: 134
Re: Hello
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2009, 09:09:44 PM »
Hey, I'm sorry if you are uncomfortable with what I wrote. 

But the fact is that you cannot be classified a Long Term Non Progressor having just tested positive June 1, 2009 and with only one data point of T-cells and viral load. 

A doctor at a prestigious Centre for Excellence for HIV/AIDS would not label you as a LTNP with only a single data point. 

What is interesting to me is that if you label yourself a LTNP, it "conveniently" puts your date of infection outside of the scope of your current relationship. 

You opened that can of worms, not me. 

And seriously now, if my comments chase you off, it's only going to look like you really do have something to hide. 
« Last Edit: July 17, 2009, 09:26:04 PM by sdguyloveslife »
Do not condemn the judgment of another because it differs from your own. You may both be wrong.

Offline madbrain

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Re: Hello
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2009, 09:56:09 PM »
Hi,

Sorry to hear about your diagnosis, but glad you found us.

My first set of blood tests showed a 960 viral load and 360 CD4.

These are OK results, but not great. The VL is low but the CD4 is below normal. Did they tell you your CD4 % ?

Quote
My Doctor said I am a Long-term Nonprogressor (Delta-32 Heterozygotes) and have had HIV for years, but it was getting to the point that I will be on HAART soon.

The above seems a bit odd.

Firstable, LTNP and "delta32 heterozygote" aren't synonymous.

There is no strict definition of LTNP. But "LT" obviously stands for long-term. Unless you know precisely how long you have had HIV, it seems premature for your doctor to be putting you in this category. People with untreated HIV infection typically develop AIDS in about 5 to 10 years on average.

The CCR5 Delta32 mutation is one genetic factor that affects HIV disease progression. But there are many others that haven't been identified yet. There are also immunological factors. Researchers are still looking for them.  I was tested for the CCR5 delta32 mutation, and I don't have it, yet my labwork still looks great (see signature). I wouldn't count myself as LTNP yet though, because I have only had HIV for 3 years.

Quote
The surprising situation is my partner of 9 years is confirmed negative in spite of years of unprotected sex.  There will be another test in about 2 months just to be sure he's not in the midst of Seroconversion, but the Doctors feel pretty comfortable that he's negative. Obviously in spite of this, we've switched to condoms.

It is good that your partner is negative. Since that is the case, using condoms now is a good idea. Your viral load is low, which reduces your chance of passing the virus. But keep in mind that the VL test is on blood samples, not semen samples, which may sometimes be higher. You don't want to take a chance of passing it. Even some people on meds with undetectable VL have reported in these forums that they were still able to pass the virus after they had unprotected sex with their neg partner. It depends a lot on what kind of sex you have also.

Quote
I think I picked it up when I was 17 or 18 and experimenting unsafely, plus that was the last time I was with another man before our releationship.

Unlike others, I am not going question your statements here. I have had my own statements about my past sexual history questioned over and over enough to know that it doesn't help anybody.

Regardless of when you caught HIV, remember that it is in the past. Unless you own a time machine and you can go back before that time and change it, knowing the exact details of your infection isn't going to help you in the present or in the future. I know the timing of my infection within a few months due to multiple HIV antibody tests. I don't know the person or the sexual act that caused my infection. I am still curious about it, but knowing it would not help any with my ongoing care.

What's going to help is having your doctor look at your own labwork on a regular basis, and probably going on meds soon. At 360 CD4, you are right at the threshold for starting meds. You may want to repeat the test at one month or 3 months to see if they are the same. The trend is important. Unless your tcells shoot up to the normal range (500+), it's probably a good idea to start meds, though.

Quote
All in all I feel fantastic and very optimistic in spite of the virus.

That is good to hear. I wish I could have had your optimism in the beginning. I was very depressed for a good year.

Offline positivmat

  • Member
  • Posts: 222
Re: Hello
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2009, 10:48:51 PM »
Hey welcome to the forums. I am constantly amazed at the range of emotions over the diagnosis. I was nearly suicidal at first full of self-loathing, blame and horrible regret. But I am working through it. Not as well adjusted as you sound yet but can see the light now and feel mostly lucky and grateful now. There have been others here who accepted it as well as you and they really inspired me to dig down deep and work through this. 

Anyway welcome and good luck with your meds decisions.

Matt

Offline anniebc

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  • Posts: 5,942
  • AM member since 2003
Re: Hello
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2009, 04:39:40 AM »
Hi Twz

Welcome to the forums, I look forward to hearing more about your diagnosis and any more info you get from your Doctor as you start to move on with your diagnosis.

SDguy..this is a support forum we are not here to judge, and this sort of comment..

Quote
I hope you don't expect us to believe that!


really isn't nessecccary, you are practically calling the poster a liar and that is not tolerated here...if you are not sure of anything or don't understand what the OP is saying then ask questions but don't just assume he is posting BS...thank you, lets keep this civil.

Jan
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Never knock on deaths door..ring the bell and run..he really hates that.

Offline Inchlingblue

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Re: Hello
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2009, 01:00:20 PM »

The surprising situation is my partner of 9 years is confirmed negative in spite of years of unprotected sex.  There will be another test in about 2 months just to be sure he's not in the midst of Seroconversion, but the Doctors feel pretty comfortable that he's negative. Obviously in spite of this, we've switched to condoms.

 

It sounds like you have access to very good care so you should be fine, which is great news. I'm fascinated by something and was wondering if it's ok to ask you a couple of personal question: since you and your partner of 9 years have been having unprotected sex and he is still negative, I was wondering: are you guys versatile or is one top and one bottom? Is there cumming involved with the anal sex (meaning cumming inside)? I'm just very curious as far as transmission (or lack thereof) in situations such as yours.

Thanks ;)

EDITED TO ADD: If someone is delta-32 heterozygous (10% of the population is), then it has been shown that progression of disease is slower. Whether or not that makes them, strictly speaking, a LTNP depends. Not everyone who is delta-32 heterozygous is a LTNP.

It's possible that your partner might be delta-32 homozygous if he has remained negative after repeated exposure. If he is delta-32 homozygous that would not make him completely immune, so it's still important to use condoms; he would still be susceptible to being infected by CXCR4-tropic virus.

LINK:

http://www.mcld.co.uk/hiv/?q=delta32
« Last Edit: July 18, 2009, 02:16:28 PM by Inchlingblue »

Offline sdguyloveslife

  • Member
  • Posts: 134
Re: Hello
« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2009, 01:32:17 PM »
TWZ,

I’m sorry that some of my comments were not very supportive.  I imagine it didn’t make you feel very welcome and for that I apologize.  I hope my comments didn’t run you off. 

I was “projecting” some of my own stuff and it was misdirected at you.  Since I tested positive, many + guys I have met have these “cute and innocent stories of transmission all wrapped up nicely and tied with a pretty little bow.”  I believe it’s attitudes like this that perpetuate the stigma associated with HIV – when I “want” to believe it shouldn’t make a lick of difference how anyone contracts the virus. 

I know bringing in “my stuff” doesn’t make it right, but again, I’m sorry.  I wish you well. 

Sincerely,
Richard
Do not condemn the judgment of another because it differs from your own. You may both be wrong.

Offline smalltown66

  • Member
  • Posts: 73
Re: Hello
« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2009, 04:14:36 PM »
TWZ,

Sorry about your diagnosis, but I think you are starting with a great attitude. You have taken a giant step in signing up for this forum. You will find lots of support, friendship and advice.

Keep up the positive attitude!

Smalltown66
Lifting the weight of the world sure is easier with others with the same goal.

 


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