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Author Topic: flu shot blip?  (Read 1745 times)

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Offline bob_89q

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flu shot blip?
« on: May 09, 2013, 07:25:49 AM »
i had the inactive flu shot a week or two befor i had my cd4 and vl blood test.
i got the results today, and i just need some logical, accurate advice please.
I have been undetectable (below 20) for 4 months and now the vl has risen to 30.
in my neck of the woods below 20 is undetectable and thus my virus is detectable.

please, could this blip be due to the flu shot?  or is the Grim Reaper waiting??
i have requested another blood test 4 weeks from now. but in the mean time should i panic, worry, cash in any insurance polices, run up loads of debt or what??

i know i am mocking the situation but i am really worried, so any advice would be welcomed.

Online Jeff G

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2013, 08:16:07 AM »
i had the inactive flu shot a week or two befor i had my cd4 and vl blood test.
i got the results today, and i just need some logical, accurate advice please.
I have been undetectable (below 20) for 4 months and now the vl has risen to 30.
in my neck of the woods below 20 is undetectable and thus my virus is detectable.

please, could this blip be due to the flu shot?  or is the Grim Reaper waiting??
i have requested another blood test 4 weeks from now. but in the mean time should i panic, worry, cash in any insurance polices, run up loads of debt or what??

i know i am mocking the situation but i am really worried, so any advice would be welcomed.

Hi Bob ... the most commonly used viral load test are extremely sensitive and pick up more variations than they used too . I wouldn't worry about the slight blip , Im undetectable but have seen my viral load go up to a hundred before coming back down to 20 on the next draw . I'm not sure about the flu shot aspect .

Offline bob_89q

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2013, 08:29:20 AM »
Thanks Jeff let's see what other people think.
Until then I will not answer the knocking on my door (could be the Reaper!)

Offline Grasshopper

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2013, 08:44:30 AM »
Are you familiar with this ? 

http://www.aids.org/topics/aids-factsheets/aids-background-information/what-is-aids/safer-sex-guidelines/viral-load-tests/

"•The viral load test results can be thrown off if your body is fighting an infection, or if you have just received an immunization (like a flu shot). You should not have blood taken for a viral load test within four weeks of any infection or immunization."

modified to add this :

"Blips

It is worth noting here that with the newer and more sensitive assays, patients who were once always “undetectable” may now show variable low-level viremia. While this can be disconcerting to the patient and to the physician, it truly is a result of the increased sensitivities of the assays at low viral loads "

http://www.positivelyaware.com/2011/11_05/undetectable.shtml
« Last Edit: May 09, 2013, 09:01:40 AM by Grasshopper »

Offline buginme2

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2013, 12:04:27 PM »


please, could this blip be due to the flu shot?  or is the Grim Reaper waiting??
i have requested another blood test 4 weeks from now. but in the mean time should i panic, worry, cash in any insurance polices, run up loads of debt or what??

i know i am mocking the situation but i am really worried, so any advice would be welcomed.

What's with the drama? 

Your previous posts state your a nurse? Really, your a nurse and you post this? What hospital do you work at so I can avoid it.  Now that's mocking.


Offline bob_89q

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2013, 06:46:56 PM »
Lol, sorry I forgot that as a nurse I should know everything about every thing on every subject.
There is no drama, just seeking an answer to a question. Anyway it does not matter what my job is, if I chose to be a drama queen when given news that I perceive as stressful then I will be a drama queen.
At the end of the day I am a human with human emotions :-)
Come to my hospital any time :-)

Online Jeff G

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  • How am I doing Beren ?
Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2013, 06:56:14 PM »
Lol, sorry I forgot that as a nurse I should know everything about every thing on every subject.
There is no drama, just seeking an answer to a question. Anyway it does not matter what my job is, if I chose to be a drama queen when given news that I perceive as stressful then I will be a drama queen.
At the end of the day I am a human with human emotions :-)
Come to my hospital any time :-)


 ;) ;) ;)

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2013, 07:07:26 PM »
is the Grim Reaper waiting??

That was the best thing I've read on this forum in ages. I'd hate to see the Reaper appear when evidently there's going to be a cure available in a few weeks.
"Iíve slept with enough men to know that Iím not gay"

Offline leatherman

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2013, 07:20:28 PM »
the correct answer is that a blip is a blip when it's in the thousands

just a handful of years ago <500 was undetectable because that's as far as the test could go. within an undetectable range like that we lived and thrived - there was no appearance of the Reaper. The only reason 20 is called undetectable now is because the average test now goes that low.

Did you know that some people have access to tests that measure <5 as undetectable? Does that mean your 20 count IS detectable?  ??? Of course it does!  :o None of us have been cured of HIV..yet. :D Undetectable of 0 is a fallacy. HIV is hidden in reservoirs that constantly put out HIV. That's why we have to take meds every day to constantly fight off the HIV.

I had a blip of 2740 once. Four weeks later at the next test is was back to <50 (UD back at that time). Speaking of which, you do understand that a one-off test should NEVER stress you, right? You should only ever be concerned about the trend over 3 tests over a fair amount of time.
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


chart from 1992-2013; updated 2/09/13  Reyataz/Norvir/Truvada

Offline bob_89q

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2013, 07:23:49 PM »
Well the knocking has stopped, and I thank this forum for that. I will bring up flu shots and viral load with the dr next time. I should have been informed.
Now, do you think the Reaper will ever learn how to SMS or Facebook? I mean, come on this is not the dark ages, who on earth actually goes and knocks on a door!

Offline Miss Philicia

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  • celebrity poster, faker & poser
Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2013, 07:25:42 PM »
Didn't your doctor tell you that this was insignificant?
"Iíve slept with enough men to know that Iím not gay"

Offline bob_89q

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #11 on: May 09, 2013, 07:32:11 PM »
Yes I did mention it was a small raise. But like she said, it could be the start of some thing!
Any like the previous poster said, it is small and should
Not be taken in isolation.
Thank you poz forum. X

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2013, 07:42:03 PM »
I'm a bit confused with that last post. Are you stating for the record that your doctor didn't state something like "this means nothing"? My doctor wouldn't even bother retesting me in 4 weeks. And when I've had a blip, if we even want to call it that which clinically we should not, it's been ~100 not 30. Frankly I think your doctor is wasting money having you test again in 4 weeks, not to mention needlessly stressing out the patient.
"Iíve slept with enough men to know that Iím not gay"

Offline bocker3

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2013, 08:29:54 PM »
There is no real difference in a VL of 30 or one of 19 (which would be reported as "undetectable"), so this really, and truly, is nothing to worry about.

I think folks get hung up on that "undetectable" word.  The assay, very well may be "detecting" virus at a level less than 20, however, it is only sensitive down to 20, so it can't be reported out a value of 14.  Now, there may, truly, be no virus that it is detecting, but again, that sensitivity issue doesn't mean that there isn't some there.  I remember when the "undetectable" level was 10,000.  As the test gets more sensitive, I fear, it simply increases angst, when there is an actual number, that is, in fact, unimportant.  Think about it, if you were tested a couple years back, you wouldn't have gotten that 30, you would have gotten <50 -- so..........  what's the difference here??

Relax and try to not stress on things that aren't concerning -- stress can cause a decrease in CD4's --   ;)

Oh -- and if your doctor really did say "this could be the start of something" over this result -- it might be time to shop around for a new one.  Doctors should be trying to help you and that comment doesn't fit -- IMO.

Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
Nov05 288/18%  47,564
Current Labs
May2013 691/31% <20

Offline mikeyb39

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2013, 11:33:12 PM »
Lol, sorry I forgot that as a nurse I should know everything about every thing on every subject.
There is no drama, just seeking an answer to a question. Anyway it does not matter what my job is, if I chose to be a drama queen when given news that I perceive as stressful then I will be a drama queen.
At the end of the day I am a human with human emotions :-)
Come to my hospital any time :-)

I was told the same thing Bob when I had similar question above, that I was being dramatic.  Trust me i've seen drama on this site.  This is supposed to be a support site, but there are some on here that love to call folks out on any and everything.   I don't believe you question has an drama to it, there is nothing wrong with wanting some reinforcements and kind words from time to time.
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 tednlou2

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #15 on: May 10, 2013, 12:03:49 AM »
I was told the same thing Bob when I had similar question above, that I was being dramatic.  Trust me i've seen drama on this site.  This is supposed to be a support site, but there are some on here that love to call folks out on any and everything.   I don't believe you question has an drama to it, there is nothing wrong with wanting some reinforcements and kind words from time to time.

I didn't think you were being a drama queen.  You obviously had some unknown illness that dropped your counts.  You said your WBC was off the charts.  I would be concerned about an unknown illness and that drop.  I would want to know what it was I had.  Without a diagnosis of something like the flu, you really don't know whether this was the beginning of something more serious.  And, if you got more illness, I would be concerned how my defense would handle it, with a low count.  And, didn't you have issues with energy?  I know that, on top of the illness and drop, would cause me concern.  So, I think it was natural to be concerned.  You may just had a mystery illness that you cleared, but you may have had something more serious. 

Offline bob_89q

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  • Posts: 29
Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #16 on: May 10, 2013, 12:18:41 AM »
Thanks to all of you. I think it was due to the flu shot. If on the next text it goes below 20 I will talk to the dr and ask why I was not informed about the potential increase related to the shot.
I think every one has helped to settle my anxiety. So thanks to all my bro and hoes ( I think that is the correct American slang )

Offline leatherman

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #17 on: May 10, 2013, 01:16:03 AM »
about the potential increase related to the shot.
it could also just be because some reservoir of hiv spilled over right as you had this test done :D or it could have been an error from the lab, or it could have been from a recent sickness, or it could have been a side effect from a vaccination, etc. This kind of difference (<1000) in viral load count is pretty much negligible. Especially if it only happens in one test.

by the way, did you know that even if your blood shows a UD VL, you can still have a detectable viral load in your semen?? Undetectable is just a snapshot measure of your VL at the time of the blood draw. Undetectable doesn't mean the HIV is gone, so never be surprised if it's actually able to be measured a little bit in your body at any given time.

http://www.aidsmeds.com/articles/hiv_semen_transmission_1667_22190.shtml
http://www.hivandhepatitis.com/hiv-aids/hiv-aids-topics/hiv-prevention/3800-icaac-2012-hiv-may-be-shed-in-semen-even-if-blood-plasma-viral-load-is-undetectable

the LESSON from aidsmeds about viral load says this
Quote
While taking therapy, your viral load lab report might show that HIV can no longer be detected. This is known as having an "undetectable" viral load. However, this does not mean that HIV is no longer present in your body since less than 5% of HIV in the body can be found in the blood.

ask why I was not informed about the potential increase related to the shot.
maybe because it doesn't happen that way to everyone and maybe because an increase in VL after a recent vaccination is so negligible that the increase doesn't mean anything and there wasn't really anything to warn you about. that's why your doctor implying that this issue (of such a small VL change) was somehow important was a very incorrect statement to have made to you.
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


chart from 1992-2013; updated 2/09/13  Reyataz/Norvir/Truvada

Offline bob_89q

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #18 on: May 10, 2013, 01:39:25 AM »
Can I get my ummmm semen tested? That would be interesting!

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #19 on: May 10, 2013, 02:27:55 AM »
Can I get my ummmm semen tested? That would be interesting!

A friend of mine who was in the vaccine trial (halted, didn't work) had his semen tested. it's apparently expensive. Also, and someone can correct me, it's not a reliable long-term test but rather a "snapshot" of that day/hour.

From what I understand, blips can be very brief in duration. Sometimes it's just having the bad luck to get a blood draw when all signs point to blip.

I was pissed for a year because my viral load was always listed as 87. Only in the last month when the doctor's office switched to a new lab and new standard was I informed that "87" was the code for "under 100, therefore undetectable" by the old lab's standards. wish that would have been explained. Now the lab detects down to 20, and I am as officially UD as I can be with that level.

It's frustrating to see that a lab, a moment in time, and other things can all create such anxiety in those of us who long for a solid answer. I guess it's going to be difficult to find such a thing when our bodies (and the labs) appear to be fluid a great deal of the time.

FWIW, I have researched HIV since before my own infection in 1993 and still discover new things, new anxieties, and new junk to be worried about. i don't think a person's profession shields them from the concerns we all feel. True, I envy nurses and doctors because they can access paywall-shielded journal stuff that laymen can't.


"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 bocker3

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #20 on: May 10, 2013, 08:04:56 AM »
I was told the same thing Bob when I had similar question above, that I was being dramatic.  Trust me i've seen drama on this site.  This is supposed to be a support site, but there are some on here that love to call folks out on any and everything.   I don't believe you question has an drama to it, there is nothing wrong with wanting some reinforcements and kind words from time to time.

I don't think folks are intending to "call folks out" here -- I think (but am open to being wrong) that we are all just trying to help people not freak out over things that aren't warranted.  While it is a normal reaction for those who are newer to living with HIV, it is still something that has to be addressed.  If every little thing causes stress and panic, life is going to be a bit tougher than it needs to be.  The question isn't where the drama questions are coming from -- it's a very reasonable question.  It is the (over) reaction to the actual VL result itself.  The OP has received support in this thread -- people HAVE answered his question -- some with a bit more "tough love" than perhaps you liked, but it is still being answered. 
Honestly, as Ted sort of pointed out, I might be more concerned about an underlying illness that caused a high WBC over a VL of 30.

Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
Nov05 288/18%  47,564
Current Labs
May2013 691/31% <20

Offline bob_89q

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #21 on: May 11, 2013, 01:43:58 AM »
Well I am not holding any grudges.
I asked a question and got good answers AND support. What more can be asked?
No doubt the next time I ask a question I will receive the same support. That is what this forum holds for me and I am just very greatfull that there are people who are willing to take the time to help.
P.s I did not mention white blood cells.

Offline bocker3

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #22 on: May 11, 2013, 08:23:09 AM »
P.s I did not mention white blood cells.

Sorry - confused you with a different post.

Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
Nov05 288/18%  47,564
Current Labs
May2013 691/31% <20

Offline tednlou2

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Re: flu shot blip?
« Reply #23 on: May 12, 2013, 03:41:32 AM »
Sorry - confused you with a different post.

Mike

Mikeyb39 had discussed sky high WBC in his thread.  You and I were replying to his post, but I see how it got confused with this threads OP, Bob.   

 


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