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Author Topic: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?  (Read 3434 times)

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Offline jam_borg1987

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How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« on: December 24, 2012, 07:28:23 PM »
I've been positive for a year now, I have never taken any meds. However, my viral load is and always was undetectable. My T-cell count is currently 1150, there is no proviral DNA in my blood (DNA by PCR Proviral HIV Test came back negative) and there is no evidence of active replication (p24 antigen HIV test came back negative).

I only know I am positive, because the OraQuick, ELISA, and Western Blot all came back weakly positive. So, what are my chances of infecting someone? Im talking in terms of, oral sex, and anal sex.

Thanks!

Offline jam_borg1987

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2012, 08:03:28 PM »
I've been positive for a year now, I have never taken any meds. However, my viral load is and always was undetectable. My T-cell count is currently 1150, there is no proviral DNA in my blood (DNA by PCR Proviral HIV Test came back negative) and there is no evidence of active replication (p24 antigen HIV test came back negative).

I only know I am positive, because the OraQuick, ELISA, and Western Blot all came back weakly positive. So, what are my chances of infecting someone? Im talking in terms of, oral sex, and anal sex.

Thanks!

For those who do not know, HIV Elite Controllers are a very rare subset ofHIV positive people who are able to control the virus in their bodies without medications. Essentially, HIV to their bodies, is like any other virus.

Now, the reason I ask this question, is because I do know that HIV positive people who achieve undetectable viral loads by medication, are muchmuch less likely to transmit HIV. However, my viral load is undetectable WITHOUT meds.

So I guess wha Im asking is, do the meds have something to do with it? Do they change anything?

Offline Buckmark

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2012, 12:19:50 AM »
Quote
Quote from: jam_borg1987 on December 24, 2012, 07:28:23 PM

Quote
    I've been positive for a year now, I have never taken any meds. However, my viral load is and always was undetectable. My T-cell count is currently 1150, there is no proviral DNA in my blood (DNA by PCR Proviral HIV Test came back negative) and there is no evidence of active replication (p24 antigen HIV test came back negative).

    I only know I am positive, because the OraQuick, ELISA, and Western Blot all came back weakly positive. So, what are my chances of infecting someone? Im talking in terms of, oral sex, and anal sex.

    Thanks!

For those who do not know, HIV Elite Controllers are a very rare subset ofHIV positive people who are able to control the virus in their bodies without medications. Essentially, HIV to their bodies, is like any other virus.

Now, the reason I ask this question, is because I do know that HIV positive people who achieve undetectable viral loads by medication, are muchmuch less likely to transmit HIV. However, my viral load is undetectable WITHOUT meds.

So I guess wha Im asking is, do the meds have something to do with it? Do they change anything?



No one else has responded so, I'll take a stab at answering.

First, I am not a doctor.  But I would think that, as an elite controller, your "chance" of infecting someone should be the same as someone who is taking meds and has an undetectable viral load in their blood.  Both individuals are measured with the same test, which has the same level of sensitivity (and margin for error).  And I believe there were several studies this year that showed that a undetectable viral load in your blood does not mean you have an undetectable viral load in your semen.

If your tests are coming back showing you are positive, then you have HIV in your body, and therefore could pass it on to infect someone else.  I really can't quantify the chances, and I don't think anyone else here can, either.  So even as an elite controller you should understand your risks and responsibilities when having unsafe sex.

You should also be aware that some elite controllers experience CD4 loss despite undetectable viral loads.

Why are you asking this question?

(Edited only to add the OP's original questions / quotes).
« Last Edit: December 26, 2012, 12:51:47 AM by Buckmark »
"Life in Lubbock, Texas, taught me two things:
     One is that God loves you and you're going to burn in hell.
     The other is that sex is the most awful, filthy thing on earth and you should save it for someone you love."
- Butch Hancock, Musician, The Flatlanders

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2012, 12:34:48 AM »
Of course thus presupposes that semen of questionable viral load would be the issue. What's the vedict on other acts?
"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 mecch

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2012, 08:15:30 AM »
I've been positive for a year now, I have never taken any meds. However, my viral load is and always was undetectable. My T-cell count is currently 1150, there is no proviral DNA in my blood (DNA by PCR Proviral HIV Test came back negative) and there is no evidence of active replication (p24 antigen HIV test came back negative).

I only know I am positive, because the OraQuick, ELISA, and Western Blot all came back weakly positive. So, what are my chances of infecting someone? Im talking in terms of, oral sex, and anal sex.

Thanks!

Since you are such a rare example of complete viral control, I assume you have access to doctors.  Hell, it looks like you actually eliminated the virus totally.

So, if you have access to doctors, who have followed you and provided all this info on your special case, why dont you ask one or a few of these doctors for their opinion on this question and report it back to this forum.  Rather than a bunch of laymen taking stabs.

I highly doubt you will get a "100% you cannot transmit" answer from YOUR doctor(s), but it will be interesting to see what they say and how they explain their answers.

“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline emeraldize

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2012, 05:26:43 PM »
Why don't you write to Bruce Walker at massachusetts general hospital and see what he says (if he replies)?

Offline Fisher

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2012, 07:22:09 PM »
Jam:

It is highly likely you are very, very fortunate. 

NIH is always looking for individual like you. They would screen you.

While they would pay your expenses, you need to be solid in your time and life to committ.

At the start it is exciting.  In the long run, it is a labor, when disappoinment may arise, and you need to hold strong in your heart.

Should you feel or desire to make yourself available to play a tiny part in the ending of this nightmare for all of us, PM me.
- fisher
07/14 CD 391 %20 VL UD
04/14 CD 486 %23 VL <20
11/13 CD 351 %21  VL <20
10/13 CD 390 %16  VL <20
06/13 CD 315 %19  VL  22
02/13 CD 396 %14  VL <20
12/12 CD 392 %13  VL 320
11/12 CD 428 %13  VL 1200
*Started Meds: Atripla
10/12 CD 427 %11  VL 139000 -- 09/12 CD 408 %13 VL 92928
09/11 CD 745 %27 VL CLOT -- 10/10 CD 863 %29 VL 2782
10/09 CD 597 %30 VL 2537 -- 05/08 CD 809 %28 VL 1504
04/07 CD 797 %25 VL 3558 -- 11/06 CD 720 %28 VL 1214
06/05 CD 731 %25 VL 1575 -- 12/04 CD 1176 %30 VL 1329
01/04 CD 959 %26 VL 1011 -- 11/03 CD 1000 %28 VL 1581
12/02 CD 748 %28 -- 10/01 CD 860 %25
08/00 CD 1022 %28 -- 04/99 CD 854 %27
11/98 CD 899 %28 -- 02/97 CD 1400 %37
11/96 CD 1325  VL <500 -- 09/96 – Western Blot
05/83 – 04/98 - Monogamous Partner Being Negative
ARS - Los Angeles Dec '82

Offline tednlou2

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2012, 01:21:56 AM »
Can you be considered an elite controller after one year? 

Offline emeraldize

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2012, 08:36:26 AM »
Jam:

It is highly likely you are very, very fortunate. 

NIH is always looking for individual like you. They would screen you.

While they would pay your expenses, you need to be solid in your time and life to committ.

At the start it is exciting.  In the long run, it is a labor, when disappoinment may arise, and you need to hold strong in your heart.

Should you feel or desire to make yourself available to play a tiny part in the ending of this nightmare for all of us, PM me.

We have lots of previous posts about elite controller research on this site.  NIH and MGH need eligible participants. To describe participation in research as a labor or something for which one "must hold strong" in their heart,to me, reads as somewhat melodramatic. One either wishes to participate or they don't. It is mostly about availability, blood draws and ability to kill waiting room time. One may leave a research study at any time although that is not the desired result.  I would describe it as important to furthering research, fairly compensated and someday, if it factors into cure or prevention, or even if it doesn't, you can feel good about having volunteered.

Offline Fisher

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2012, 06:02:37 PM »
Maybe I am a drama queen after all. There is still a Felecia inside of me ready to scream out of me, after all these years!

It's just that you go back and back. You hear little in regards of advancement.  However, the primary researcher at NIH I am convinced has full heart (hrdra) and determination. 

Your deal with a bit of bureaucratic structure. Always a bit annoying.

I do not know if I will continue to be part of the LTNP cohort. Highly unlikely, as I am now on meds.

Despite, any chance that myself or anyone of us, to play a "tiny" or "major" role in the ending of this nightmare for all of us . . . for me, at least, a no brainer, no choice at all . . . to do what is right and necessary, whatever the personal opinions, inconviences, or annoyances.





- fisher
07/14 CD 391 %20 VL UD
04/14 CD 486 %23 VL <20
11/13 CD 351 %21  VL <20
10/13 CD 390 %16  VL <20
06/13 CD 315 %19  VL  22
02/13 CD 396 %14  VL <20
12/12 CD 392 %13  VL 320
11/12 CD 428 %13  VL 1200
*Started Meds: Atripla
10/12 CD 427 %11  VL 139000 -- 09/12 CD 408 %13 VL 92928
09/11 CD 745 %27 VL CLOT -- 10/10 CD 863 %29 VL 2782
10/09 CD 597 %30 VL 2537 -- 05/08 CD 809 %28 VL 1504
04/07 CD 797 %25 VL 3558 -- 11/06 CD 720 %28 VL 1214
06/05 CD 731 %25 VL 1575 -- 12/04 CD 1176 %30 VL 1329
01/04 CD 959 %26 VL 1011 -- 11/03 CD 1000 %28 VL 1581
12/02 CD 748 %28 -- 10/01 CD 860 %25
08/00 CD 1022 %28 -- 04/99 CD 854 %27
11/98 CD 899 %28 -- 02/97 CD 1400 %37
11/96 CD 1325  VL <500 -- 09/96 – Western Blot
05/83 – 04/98 - Monogamous Partner Being Negative
ARS - Los Angeles Dec '82

Offline emeraldize

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2012, 12:00:52 AM »
Maybe I am a drama queen after all. There is still a Felecia inside of me ready to scream out of me, after all these years!

It's just that you go back and back. You hear little in regards of advancement.  However, the primary researcher at NIH I am convinced has full heart (hrdra) and determination. 

Your deal with a bit of bureaucratic structure. Always a bit annoying.

I do not know if I will continue to be part of the LTNP cohort. Highly unlikely, as I am now on meds.

Despite, any chance that myself or anyone of us, to play a "tiny" or "major" role in the ending of this nightmare for all of us . . . for me, at least, a no brainer, no choice at all . . . to do what is right and necessary, whatever the personal opinions, inconviences, or annoyances.

You're far from a drama queen!! I appreciate your post. You and I were in the same cohort I suspect. I disconnected due to going on meds. It was a no brainer for me to get involved, too--the structure is necessary given the research and consent process, the enormity of the enterprise, etc.  Gotta have it or you'd have mayhem.

Offline Fisher

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2012, 07:46:15 PM »
Someday Felecia will come out of me. I am 57.  Not sure yet, but maybe some lipstick and a wig would suit me well.  A mustache shave, of course.

But Jam! Go for it!

You may have a make-up, no, not what's on you face rignt now, that could be unique and invaluable!  A key, not otherwsie found.

Unlikely, but it is in the most unlikely places of all . . . this nightmare will resolve and end. . .

Go for it!

Myself or others here can get you "connected."

And I've mentioned, there are minor issues to deal with.

But go for it!



- fisher
07/14 CD 391 %20 VL UD
04/14 CD 486 %23 VL <20
11/13 CD 351 %21  VL <20
10/13 CD 390 %16  VL <20
06/13 CD 315 %19  VL  22
02/13 CD 396 %14  VL <20
12/12 CD 392 %13  VL 320
11/12 CD 428 %13  VL 1200
*Started Meds: Atripla
10/12 CD 427 %11  VL 139000 -- 09/12 CD 408 %13 VL 92928
09/11 CD 745 %27 VL CLOT -- 10/10 CD 863 %29 VL 2782
10/09 CD 597 %30 VL 2537 -- 05/08 CD 809 %28 VL 1504
04/07 CD 797 %25 VL 3558 -- 11/06 CD 720 %28 VL 1214
06/05 CD 731 %25 VL 1575 -- 12/04 CD 1176 %30 VL 1329
01/04 CD 959 %26 VL 1011 -- 11/03 CD 1000 %28 VL 1581
12/02 CD 748 %28 -- 10/01 CD 860 %25
08/00 CD 1022 %28 -- 04/99 CD 854 %27
11/98 CD 899 %28 -- 02/97 CD 1400 %37
11/96 CD 1325  VL <500 -- 09/96 – Western Blot
05/83 – 04/98 - Monogamous Partner Being Negative
ARS - Los Angeles Dec '82

Offline 11 letters

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2012, 08:45:04 PM »
Can you be considered an elite controller after one year?

Those were my thoughts, as well.
I am not a physician or nurse, and no comments from me can be construed as medical advice. Please seek such advice from a qualified healthcare professional.

Offline Ann

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2012, 10:02:20 AM »
Those were my thoughts, as well.

11, are you hiv positive?

From your other posts I gather you work for an hiv/aids charity, but unless you are positive yourself, you should not be posting in this particular part of the forums.

If you're not hiv positive, you are restricted to the Am I Infected, Someone I Care About, Activism and Off Topic forums.

Thank you for your cooperation.

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 Gman49

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #14 on: December 30, 2012, 03:06:33 PM »
Ann

I thought the jam quoted that "I've been positive for a year now...."

Is he positive or not?
Live to Serve!

Offline Basquo

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #15 on: December 30, 2012, 07:32:05 PM »

So, what are my chances of infecting someone?


Jam, the short answer to your question is, "We don't know," and the longer answer is hopefully, "We don't know...yet."

If you are indeed a LTNP (an elite controller or viremic controller) your participation in clinical trials, as others have said, is of immense value. Please consider this avenue.

Personally, I have never infected anyone, to my knowledge, including my HIV-negative partner. This is a perfect opportunity for me to spread the message of safer sex and responsibility, but it's a personal choice. I've chosen and continue to choose not to expose my partner to the risks that can result in an infection. And in the heat of the moment, it's a continual challenge. I know what feels best but I settle for what feels good. No way I would want my partner to get this. He doesn't have the good fortune fo the genes I have. And the risk is too great, however minimal.

Offline Ann

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Re: How likely am I to infect someone if I am an elite controller?
« Reply #16 on: December 31, 2012, 06:23:10 AM »
Ann

I thought the jam quoted that "I've been positive for a year now...."

Is he positive or not?

I wasn't talking to Jam, I was talking to "11 letters". That's why I quoted him. Please look at my post more carefully if you're still unsure. Thanks.
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...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

 


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