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My husbands low CD4 count

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Danigirl:
Hello my husband was diagnoised positive in late January of this year. He started treatment in the second week of February.   Initially his VL was over 150k with CD4 count of 28. He has been on Isentress and Kaletra which I know is not the normal choice of combination but he had a reaction to atripla.  He got his new labs today and his VL dropped to 190 which is great! However, the CD4 is only 48 :(

My question is..has any one here started out with a low cd4 count, such as my husbands, and rebounded well? If so, how long did it take? Is there anything we can do on our own to help it improve?

My husband is excited about the viral load news which is great because he has not been very optimistic since his diagnosis (and I want to keep it that way) but honestly, I'm alittle scared about the CD4 count being so low.

Jeff G:
Welcome to the forum Dani . There  are many of us here that have come back to excellent health with almost identical lab numbers , myself included .

Viral loads fall quickly and CD4 counts take longer , sometime much longer . I would say your husband is very much on the right track and you have every right to be optimistic that he is gong to do very well on treatment . It took me years to get my cd4 count above 400 ish , so just hang in there and let those drugs do the work and he will get better .

Danigirl:
Thanks Jeff :) I suppose I should just relax a bit. After all, it has only been a little over 6 weeks since he has been on treatment.  I look forward to the CD4 getting better. In the meantime he is on antibiotics and we are trying our best to eat healthy and get some exercise in!

Thanks again for your response ;)

Andy Velez:
Dani, I've seen many who have rebounded from low CD numbers including quite a few significantly lower than your husband's current number. Your concern is understandable but when the meds work they really do the job. So you two have to be patient. As you yourself have noted, 6 weeks is a very short time. His vl dropping is a good sign that things are heading in the right direction.

Keep us posted.

Cheers. 

frdfandc:
I started out with a very high VL load and a very low CD4 count - IIRC it was 8. I started Atripla immediately after being diagnosed. That was March of 2011.

After 6 weeks, my CD4's were 28. It took approx 1 full year to get my CD4's above 200 and another 6 months for the Doctor to take me off of Bactrim. The past year my CD4's have been between 210 and 230 at two different appointments. The last reading was 208, IIRC, because I was getting over a bad head cold/flu like symptoms.

Ultimately the Doctor is only concerned about keeping the CD4 levels over 200 and my VL undetectable as to prevent opportunistic infections from occurring. So for the past 18 months, it has been pretty much the "no news is good news" type of thing.

CD4 levels will vary from person to person. A friend of mine was diagnosed before I was and started Atripla almost 1 year after I did and his CD4's have not dropped below 400.

As mentioned before VL dropping is a very good sign. Have patience and good luck. Things will get better.

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