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Author Topic: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis  (Read 1687 times)

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Offline MTanic

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  • Posts: 21
High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« on: September 30, 2012, 09:22:38 PM »
Now this fear of mine might strike you as funny after my other thread. Back when I discovered I had HIV, I was tested negative for Hepatitis B and C. And I was supposed to get the vaccine, but I was just lazy, since over here you have to buy it yourself in the pharmacy and then go to the doc to get it administered. Yeah, I'm way too lazy sometimes. Now we tested for HEP again and I'm expecting the results within the next days and I'm scared. Now I read a lot about Hep B and Hep C and the chance for me having Hep C are low, since I didn't have any blood to blood contact with anybody, I'm not using drugs etc... but Hep B? If not vaccinated, there's always the possibility... now I read that only 5 % of adults get chronic Hep B, and people with "weakened immune systems" (such as HIV-patients) are more likely to get chronic Hep B. Also, an article says this:

Quote
People with low CD4 counts (below 200) infected with HBV are much more likely to develop chronic infection than people with higher CD4 counts.

Now, my first question is: having constant cd4 counts of around 1000 for five years - does that qualify my immune system as "weakened" just because of the fact that there is HIV in my body or is my immune system still normal?
And also... having such high cd4 rates, does that mean I am capable to fight off Hep B just like healthy people? Or does the HIV prevent that?

I know it's better to just wait a few days and see the result, but as I said, I am scared. And I like to understand things :)


Offline tednlou2

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Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2012, 11:00:04 PM »
Even though you're putting the cart before the horse (guilty of this myself sometimes), it is good to get educated about hepatitis.  The more educated folks will better answer your question.  From what I've read, poz folks often have a more difficult time/experience with Hep B and C. 

I just want to know whether you're going to get that vaccination?  You don't want to be lazy about this.  If your test is neg, just make a plan to start the vaccination series that day, while this is weighing on your mind.  And, after your series is done and some time has passed, you should have your titers checked to see if you created a response.  Poz folks can have a harder time creating a response, but I know several neg folks who could never create a response.  I created a response to A, but not B.  However, my vaccination series was messed up.  After completely a second series in January, I'm about to have my titers checked to see if I created a response this time. 

All the best on a neg result and start that vaccination series!  :)

Offline MTanic

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  • Posts: 21
Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2012, 07:00:44 PM »
Of course I'm planning to do it, but still... my question stands:

Does my immune system qualify as "weakened" only because I have HIV, even though my CD4 counts are constantly that high? And am I in a better position to fight off Hep B?

Offline Ann

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Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2012, 06:30:29 AM »
MTanic, with such high CD4 counts, your immune system isn't really weakened... BUT, if you become co-infected with something like hep B, your immune system will have to work overtime to keep your hiv in check while simultaneously fighting off hep B.

You're best off getting those hep B vaccinations done. The good news is that with such a high CD4 count, you'll most likely respond very nicely to the vaccination. Sometimes people with much lower CD4 counts than you can struggle to obtain immunity against hep B through the vaccinations, which is the whole point of the exercise (to gain immunity).
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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 MTanic

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  • Posts: 21
Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2012, 05:01:09 PM »
MTanic, with such high CD4 counts, your immune system isn't really weakened... BUT, if you become co-infected with something like hep B, your immune system will have to work overtime to keep your hiv in check while simultaneously fighting off hep B.

You're best off getting those hep B vaccinations done. The good news is that with such a high CD4 count, you'll most likely respond very nicely to the vaccination. Sometimes people with much lower CD4 counts than you can struggle to obtain immunity against hep B through the vaccinations, which is the whole point of the exercise (to gain immunity).

Thanks for your answer. :D
My results came back negative, thank God.

But still, I will continue to search for an answer about how we perceive the immune system of someone like me, because someday somebody else might be in the same situation, look in the internet for a question and not get it. I think it's stupid not to consider such a situation when they write about HIV/HEP co-infections online, because they make it sound like having HIV alone, no matter in what state the immune system is, you are unable to fight off HEP B.

Offline Anqueetas

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  • Posts: 116
Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2012, 11:00:50 PM »
Even though you're putting the cart before the horse (guilty of this myself sometimes), it is good to get educated about hepatitis.  The more educated folks will better answer your question.  From what I've read, poz folks often have a more difficult time/experience with Hep B and C. 

I just want to know whether you're going to get that vaccination?  You don't want to be lazy about this.  If your test is neg, just make a plan to start the vaccination series that day, while this is weighing on your mind.  And, after your series is done and some time has passed, you should have your titers checked to see if you created a response.  Poz folks can have a harder time creating a response, but I know several neg folks who could never create a response.  I created a response to A, but not B.  However, my vaccination series was messed up.  After completely a second series in January, I'm about to have my titers checked to see if I created a response this time. 

All the best on a neg result and start that vaccination series!  :)

Cheers to this, Poz people like us already burden our liver with HAART. You don't want to burden your liver even further by having hepatitis. It is very important for poz people to have all the necessary vaccination. People we already be poz don't make the same mistake again and get infected with something that we can prevent it from happening.

Hey don't forget to have Tdap done every 10 years
ARS, hospitalized for very high fever-July 2011
diagnosed HIV positive - October 16 2011
CD4 460 19.5% VL 49000 - late October 2011
CD4 625 19.5% VL 50030 - January 2012
CD4 369 19% VL 69000 - March 2012
Start Sustiva+ Truvada - April 17 2012
CD4 524 24.5% VL UD - August 22 2012
Switch to Nevirapine+Truvada
CD4 490 26% VL UD - November 2012
CD4 539 29% VL UD - February 2013
CD4 621 28% VL UD - May 2013

Offline MTanic

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Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2012, 05:14:58 PM »
Of course, of course, but that's not the point here.
The point is the widespread HIV-bias that your immune system is weak just because you have HIV. To me it almost sounds like the bias that you get HIV just from unprotected sex, no matter if any of the partners actually has HIV.

Offline jkinatl2

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  • Doo. Dah. Dipp-ity.
Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2012, 05:56:40 PM »
Of course, of course, but that's not the point here.
The point is the widespread HIV-bias that your immune system is weak just because you have HIV. To me it almost sounds like the bias that you get HIV just from unprotected sex, no matter if any of the partners actually has HIV.

Oh yeah. I'm very familiar with that bias. Stigma remains stubborn, even in the face of science.

"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 newt

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  • the one and original newt
Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2012, 07:10:29 PM »
Very true MTanic

But on the off chance you do get Hep B do you wanna risk being in the 5-15% of people with HIV who end up with permanent hep B infection, a risk for which low/high CD4 count seems beside the point and which makes life so much shorter and more complicated on average, and HIV treatment more complicated?

I got hep B the natural way. The vaccines wouldn't take. It went, after 2 years, 2 years I'd like back from sleeping on my bed. << yes, the vaccine don't always work but it mostly does at high CD4 counts

The vaccine is simple, for most people.

The stuff on reduced CD4 counts from HIV and things not working/being greater risk applies to reduced CD4 counts not HIV in general. But me, I like vaccines, I'd get vaccinated even if I didn't have HIV.

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

Offline MTanic

  • Member
  • Posts: 21
Re: High CD4-counts and Hepatitis
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2012, 09:11:22 PM »
I'm not against the vaccine - I started this thread just out of the need to clarify one thing: I HATE being stigmatized as having a weak immune system only because I got HIV, because that's simply not true. My CD4 count is better even than the one of my doctor (they did a test run on the clinic - she's got around 600, I got almost 1100). And the most painful biases and stupidity concerning medicine is in medicine itself. :D

 


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