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Author Topic: I'M NEW HERE...HI!  (Read 3892 times)

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Offline drewm

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  • Posts: 1,155
I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« on: January 18, 2011, 10:16:52 PM »
My name is Drew and I am new to the forum. I didn't know where to start so this seemed like as good a place as any. I went to the emergency room last May after passing out at the doctors office. I found out I had Pneumonia and AIDS. Not HIV mind you, but full-blown AIDS. My CD-4 count was 8 and the viral load was close to a half million. I was a deaths door. I had never been tested because I did not think I could handle the news. (I always had a suspicion but guess I was in denial.)

I had six doctors all assure me that they could reverse the numbers and manage this disease. While I never doubted what they were saying, I was scared. I was not scared of dying per se but afraid for my family and friends.

Here I am 8 months later. I have gained 34 pounds, CD-4 count is over 300 and the viral load is down to 30. I have so, so much still to learn but wanted to share this story because I sincerely hope to be a long term survivor. I am on Atripla, Bactrim and Valtrex and am taking Prozac for depression.

Thanks for listening. I just need to share this sometimes.
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline anniebc

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Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2011, 10:58:43 PM »
Welcome to the forums Drew...I'm sure you will find all the support and information you need right here, and don't be afraid to ask questions, the guys here a a great bunch and are more than willing to help.

Hope to hear more from you.

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

Offline Maelrod

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  • Posts: 60
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2011, 11:00:32 PM »
I'm 27 y/o diagnosed on august, 5 months later my vl is 97 hope next month be UD, so now is a new start for you just be honest w ur self and everything going be ok
Is better STOp living in the past, the I SHOULDn't doesn't exist.

Online tednlou2

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Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2011, 11:25:24 PM »
Hello, Drew.  Unfortunately, many of us find out only once we're in the hospital.  I'm assuming with that CD4 count that you had PCP pneumonia.  I, too, was diagnosed with AIDS after getting pneumonia.  They feared it was PCP, but it was bacterial pneumonia.  And, my numbers bounced back, so I wasn't really at the AIDS level.  Well, I'll always be considered to have had AIDS--or so they tell me. 

Like you, I suspected I had HIV for years, but was too afraid to get tested.  I just didn't want that news and chose to believe I had a really bad case of mono that had lingering effects for years.  I had read that mono can cause lymph nodes to be swollen for years in some cases, so that is what I chose to believe.  So, when they told me, it wasn't a total shock.  It was still awful to hear the news, but it wasn't like I hadn't thought I had a good chance of having it.   

Do you know how long your doc plans to keep you on Bactrim?  Once your numbers get above 200 over a few labs, I believe it is common to stop Bactrim.  Plus, I've read where Bactrim can actually suppress CD4 counts.  The more educated folks here can elaborate on that, if that is incorrect.  You've had an awesome response to the meds and I wish you even further improvement.  Do you have any idea how long you may have been infected?  Keep us posted on how you're doing.  I look forward to hearing more from you when you're ready. 

Offline zach

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  • Posts: 1,560
  • not fade away
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2011, 11:31:10 PM »
Hey Drew, our stories are the same, numbers and all, I went through that in July last year.

Welcome, glad you found this place, pull in close, listen to the wise ones, laugh with the funny ones, cry with the sad ones.

Share anytime.
gonna go up to the mountain, for to find a little peace
looking over the valley, for the beauty i see
out across the hills, forevermore

Offline David Evans

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  • Member
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Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2011, 11:33:21 PM »
Hi Drew,

We're really glad that you're hear and that you found us. There are a lot of great people here and many find long lasting support and friendships. I suggest that you poke around and read through some threads and get a sense of the different kinds of conversations that take place.

So that this post gets the attention that it deserves, I'm going to move it to "I Just Tested Positive." That's not entirely accurate in your case, but it's a great place for people who've tested positive within the past year to support one another.

I wish you well,
David
Moderator

Offline drewm

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  • Posts: 1,155
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2011, 11:58:11 PM »
My doc is really aggressive. He likes to "be in front of the ball instead of behind it." Sorry to paint with broad strokes but that's just how it is. I think he is going to stop the Bactrim after the next labs. He was wanting to have some consistency in the numbers which we have had. Yeah, Atripla has really worked for me, my response to the med has surprised me and is certainly welcome news.

I am still shell-shocked but am seeing a Psych and my doc is really been good at taking care of me. I probably will have questions from time to time but right now don't even know where to start. Yeah, hearing the news in the hospital was weird you guys. The doctor comes in and tells me I am HIV positive and rattles off my counts, asks me how I feel about that and leaves.

I was in shock. I mean not that it couldn't happen but just hearing it. It was one of my friends who is a "Type A" personality who read between the lines and basically thought we should be calling a funeral home. This upset me more than anything else. Not the dying but leaving all of these people behind. My family has been wonderful and Chris, I think, has finally realized that I am not going anywhere yet. My partner who is also Poz has been wonderful. He nursed me back to my present healthy state and has been by my side through this whole ordeal.

What I wanted to say about hearing the news is this. The doctors were nonchalant which had two strange effects on me mentally and physically. I took the diagnoses as seriously as they did but I did not WORRY because they didn't. I had a half dozen docs telling me the same thing that they were confident they could manage this. They flip side is they were not very informative. I have learned over the past 8 months this is because there are steps and milestones to this disease that they are all too aware of but don't communicate either because they see so many of us or they just don't want to cause alarm.

At any rate, I am confident in my doc. He communicates with me on my level (NOW!) and I feel so much better. I was sick for YEARS and never realized what it was. It's strange in a way but I feel better now than I have felt in years and God willing, will continue.

I don't like to burden my family and partner talking about this stuff all the time because it has to be wearing on them and I love them more than the world. I am so very glad that I found all of you and am glad to be here. I will post my numbers sometime tomorrow so you can see my road-map.

Thanks again for the warm welcomes!
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline Matty the Damned

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  • Posts: 12,228
  • Ninja Please
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2011, 12:24:47 AM »
Hey baby,

Welcome aboard. :)

Couple more months above 300 and you'll be able to shitcan the Bactrim.

MtD

Offline drewm

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  • Posts: 1,155
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2011, 12:30:21 AM »
Thanks Matty!
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Online Jeff G

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  • How am I doing Beren ?
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2011, 12:31:20 AM »
Welcome aboard Drew .  

Offline drewm

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,155
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2011, 12:33:34 AM »
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline jkinatl2

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  • Posts: 6,007
  • Doo. Dah. Dipp-ity.
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2011, 01:13:19 AM »
Sorry you found yourself in this mess... but really, really glad you found this place.  It is, of course, a den of disrepute and mayhem. But a better group of folks cannot be found on the web. Welcome.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline phildinftlaudy

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  • sweet Ann what you think babe...
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2011, 08:35:02 AM »
Hi Drew:
Welcome to the Forum Family --- sorry bout your diagnosis, but glad you found us.  As with any family, you will see that we laugh, cry, fuss, argue, fight together --- and, like any family, you will see that some are closer than others, some loved from a distance - but still loved - and, like many families, when it push really comes to shove we seem to always have each other's back....

Hope to hear more about you and your journey --- Explore the various topics and posts.

Again, welcome!

-Phil
September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

Offline HippieLady

  • Member
  • Posts: 219
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2011, 08:56:16 AM »
Welcome Drew  :)
~Katie~
Diagnosed HIV+ April 30, 2010

Current CD4-638  VL-UD  11/2013

Offline AaronbytheC

  • Member
  • Posts: 116
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2011, 02:29:45 PM »
Welcome Drew! 

It looks like Atripla suits you well!   ;D
04/2012 CD4 721 / 29% / VL UD
02/2011 UNDETECTABLE!
12/2010 CD4 587 / 24% / VL 210
11/2010 Started Atripla
10/2010 CD4 420 / 18% / VL 13,500
09/2010 CD4 541 / 17% / VL 10,500
08/2010 CD4 498 / 18% / VL Not Taken
07/2010 CD4 307 / 18% / VL 9,500
06/2010 Confirmed Poz
03/2010 Infected
06/2009 Neg

Offline drewm

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,155
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2011, 03:00:20 PM »
Welcome Drew! 

It looks like Atripla suits you well!   ;D

Thanks Aaron. I certainly don't take it for granted. In fact, I don't take much for granted anymore  ;D


Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline mikeyb39

  • Member
  • Posts: 937
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2011, 11:48:38 PM »
welcome to the forum drew!  glad you are getting better everyday.
11/02/2010  cd4-251, vl-591000
12/09/2010  started Atripla
02/18/2011  cd4-425, vl-800
06/10/2011  cd4-447, vl-70
10/10/2011  cd4-666, vl-80
01/05/2012  swiched med (prezista,norvir ,isentress, )
02/10/2012  cd4-733, vl-UD  Viread removed
06/10/2012  cd4-614, vl-UD
12/14/2012  cd4-764, vl-UD
09/01/2013  cd4-785, vl-UD
03/06/2014. cd4- 1078, VL-UD
09/05/2014  cd4-850 , VL-UD

Offline alliance

  • Member
  • Posts: 159
  • hmmmm. . .
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2011, 11:59:22 PM »
Seems like you're on the right track, Drew -
Welcome!
"The influence of each human being on others in this life is a kind of immortality."
10/10/12   CD4=378  %=32   VL=UD
5/10/12     CD4=426  %=32  VL=UD
11/15/11   CD4=296  %=29  VL=UD(20)
6/15/11     CD4=345  %=29  VL=UD(38)
3/15/11     CD4=317  %=31  VL=UD
12/1/10     CD4=315  %=28  VL=UD
8/11/10     CD4=250  %=25  VL=UD
6/10/10     CD4=380  %=24  VL=UD
3/4/10       CD4=340  %=22   VL=UD
1/11/10     CD4=312  %=22   VL =130
11/30/09   CD4=228  %=19  VL=1726
11/20/09    started atripla
10/15/09   CD4=281  %=18   VL=85,000

Offline drewm

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  • Posts: 1,155
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2011, 12:28:19 AM »
Thanks Mikey & Alliance  :)
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2011, 10:16:40 AM »
Welcome to the forums, Drew.

That's a pretty fantastic response you've had to the meds! It can take some people years to build up their CD4 stocks when starting from such a low number.

You're doing all the right things, including giving your mental health the due care and attention it needs. So many people find it difficult to admit they need some guidance where their mental health is concerned, so well done to you. Knowing when to ask for help is a sign of great inner strength. 

You've got the right attitude to not only survive with this bug, but to thrive. Keep up the good work!

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline drewm

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  • Posts: 1,155
Re: I'M NEW HERE...HI!
« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2011, 11:36:22 AM »
Welcome to the forums, Drew.

That's a pretty fantastic response you've had to the meds! It can take some people years to build up their CD4 stocks when starting from such a low number.

You're doing all the right things, including giving your mental health the due care and attention it needs. So many people find it difficult to admit they need some guidance where their mental health is concerned, so well done to you. Knowing when to ask for help is a sign of great inner strength. 

You've got the right attitude to not only survive with this bug, but to thrive. Keep up the good work!



Ann

Thanks Ann. Glad to be ALIVE and fighting!
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

 


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