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Pregnant Wife tested HIV +

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watson70:
Hi,

So glad I found these forums I really hope someone will read my story and I can discuss it with unbiased unjudgemental people.

Recently found out that my wife is HIV+.  She cheated on me in August with an old boyfriend and we think that this is when it happened.  I found out a month later and our sexual contact decreased starkly but not before we'd conceived a child.  For one reason or another we were quite late getting the prenatal screening and blood tests but when we did we found out she was HIV.

At the same time I had a western blot test and a full blood work up 2-3 weeks later and was confirmed as being HIV negative from the most high risk times though I'm still in the 3-6 month window period.  Her viral load is quite low at 46000 so I'm pretty optomistic but not overly so that I am negative.

Before finding this out and before finding out we were going to have a baby I wanted to leave her so much despite loving her.  She can be controlling and abusive and in general isn't a great partner.  But then the baby came along and it got a bit more difficult and now she has HIV it makes it even harder.  She is an immigrant on a 2 year spouse visa and if she had to return home to (lets just say south america) then she would have to stop atripla and go on the red cross supplied generic equivalent and from what I can gather changing drugs isn't good and the generic equivalent needs taken 3 times a day so compliance is so much harder than atripla once a day.  She needs to stay in the UK for the sake of her health.

So it seems like I can't leave her...

Furthermore with the baby at 19 weeks, well the consultant says that with full treatment, c section and no breastfeeding the chance of vertical transmission runs to 0.00001% but everything I can personally find on the matter says that the risks are 1-2% which is terrible odds. 

I don't know if bringing a baby into the world with her facing this, relationship problems, the possibilities of me being infected and the fact that we must get her a visa (and need financial stability for that) means it just doesn't seem right to have a baby but at the same time I find it absolutely sickening the idea of aborting a 19 week old baby.

Its not like I have a particular dislike of abortion but 19 weeks seems really late.  But then again if I am HIV+ (still a possibility) is this my last chance to have a kid, is it her last chance if I leave her could she find someone else? 

Its a mess.  Such a mess and I'm on a real time limit to make a decision as in my area if we have an abortion we quite literally have to do it in the next few days.

 

watson70:
The fact that she is so upset about this by the way has really mitigated some of my anger issues relevant to it.  I mean despite all the relationship problems we were having a baby and her stupid ass mistake has jeopardised all of that and I feel like jeopardised the chances at a normal relationship and makes working things out so difficult.  But not saying there isn't some residual bitterness.  Had she just remained faithful to me, none of this would be happening.

Ann:
Watson, please calm down a bit. I understand this is a trying time for you, but you need to get better educated about hiv and hiv in pregnancy.

For a start, chances are excellent that you are not hiv positive. The vast majority of people who have actually been infected will seroconvert and test positive by six weeks, with the average time to seroconversion being only 22 days.

A six week negative must be confirmed at the three month point, but is highly unlikely to change. The window period has NOT been six months for quite a few years now.

A negative test result for you at or after six weeks following the last time you had unprotected anal or vaginal intercourse should ease your mind quite a bit, as it is very, very unlikely to change when you confirm at the three month point.

Hiv is much more difficult to transmit from a woman to a man. I was with an hiv negative man for a year and a half before I was diagnosed, yet he remained hiv negative despite the fact that we never used condoms pre-diagnosis. We were together for over eight years and he is hiv negative to this day.

There are countless hiv positive women who give birth to hiv negative children. However, your wife should NOT be on Atripla during the pregnancy. Efavirenz is not recommended for use in pregnancy - and efavirenz (aka Sustiva) is one of the components of Atripla. The usual combo in the UK for a pregnant woman is Kaletra plus Combivir.

I suggest you go to the British website i-Base for further information. In particular, I recommend that you both read the treatment guide HIV, pregnancy and women's health.

There is absolutely no reason why she should abort at this late stage. Doing so would only be for your benefit in not having to raise the child. There is very little chance the baby would end up hiv positive, provided your wife stays on treatment.

She really needs to discuss her treatment with her doctor, preferably a doctor who is experienced with hiv and pregnancy. If the doctor she is currently seeing put her on Atripla despite knowing she was pregnant, she needs to find a new doctor pronto.

Good luck. I hope you can eventually forgive your wife. She's a human being like the rest of us, and we humans have a habit of making mistakes.

Ann

watson70:
Ah I should clarify a number of things.  Thanks for the reply.

There are still two months to go since our last sexual contact.  Since I found out she cheated sexual contact was reduced but not stopped.  But with her low viral load of 46000 I realise transmission isn't certain.

I realise she won't be on atripla during pregnancy my concern was after pregnancy if she starts on Atripla but then because of finance (visa requirement) she has to return to her own country and breaks the treatment in favour of another one she further increases her chances of resistance.

Talked to an obstetrician and the tropical disease and infection consultant and they both say they are hard complexities that make it difficult to deal with the pregnancy and are realistic concerns.

I'm trying to forgive her and certainly to be supportive but unfortunately she doesn't make it easy as even despite me trying to be supportive with her during this difficult time she continues to be extremely abusive.  Honestly I thought her getting HIV and me being supportive would mark a new step forward in our relationship and break the domestic abuse pattern of the past.  There is still the tendency if I don't bow to every whim and request to engage in either self destructive behaviour along with what I can only describe as tantrums.

Jessy:
Hi
I am sorry to hear your story however I hope this lil bit of info can be of help.
Iam in the UK and I concived when I was on a combination  with Sustiva,I discussed my worries with my consultant regarding the risk of the baby having birth defects,My consultant pointed out that there were no known defects in human babies anyway long stroy short...I chose to stay on Sustiva and I had a very normal baby girl ,hiv free and that was 5 yrs ago.

Regarding your wife,If even in the face of this life changing situation,she is still being a cow despite offering her support, then run for your dear life as it will only get worse.She has put you in this situation and the lest she can do is show a little remorsefulness and try and work with you to save whatever you have left at least for new baby's sake.

Put things on the table,inform her of whats at stake if she doesnt already know...If she is unwilling to change her attitude then move on.

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