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Author Topic: Positive in BKK  (Read 1489 times)

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Offline pozinbkk

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  • Posts: 5
Positive in BKK
« on: April 11, 2014, 05:00:20 AM »
Hi!

I am farang, 30+, working in BKK since 5 years and i got tested HIV+ 3 days ago at BKK Christian hospital.

Apart from being still under shock, i already got my first visit with Dr. Sataporn at BKK Christian Hospital  and he sent me to check my CD4. I will get results after Songkran.

Do you have any ref. about Dr. Sataporn and is anybody getting treatment at BKK Christian Hospital
Is it normal to check only my CD4 and not my VL?

I know this is going to be a long term fight, but i would like to get it right from the beginning.

Thank you,

PozinBKK

PS: My only good news is that my long term partner (15 years +) has been tested negative.

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2014, 05:26:02 AM »
Hi PozinBKK, welcome to the forums.

It is unusual in Thailand to not have your VL checked. (It isn't unusual in some third-world countries, but Thailand has excellent hiv care these days.) I believe they even routinely do genotype testing in Thailand as well.

Genotype testing (aka resistance testing) is a form of viral load testing where they look for gene mutations that indicate drug resistance. It's possible to be infected with a drug resistant strain, so it's a good idea to have genotype testing done before considering meds.

Has your positive antibody test result been confirmed with a Western Blot test? Sometimes false positive results happen on the antibody tests and the WB filters these out. It's important that a WB test has been run and you should make sure this has been done before you go any further.

If you have been confirmed with a WB test, there are quite a few members here who live in Thailand and I'm sure they'll be happy to give you some guidance as to where the best care can be had.

Ann
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

Offline poz24singapore

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  • Posts: 23
  • Positive
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2014, 12:48:37 AM »
Hi pozinbkk, i'll have my treatment and test in Bkk as it is way more cheaper than here in Singapore. I was advised to check Dr Mattana @Bumrunggrad Hospital by a friend here in Sg (poz too) whom he seek before. Dr Mattana is a very caring Doctor, when she sent me for the confirmation of my hiv status, she immediately sent me for another test (from Viral load upto urine test, chest xray, hep b & c, and other tests) all in one visit, that's how they are fast. And it cost me sgd 700 For this. After 3 hours, I got the result, and she wants me to have the ARV genotype test and it cost 7K baht, and I asked her if she know somewhere I can have the test cheaper and she directed me to Red cross anonymous clinic (which it will cost 2,500baht) way more cheaper. And since you've mentioned that they didn't checked your viral load, i would advise you to get your other test at the Redcross anonymous clinic (somewhere at Rama 4) near sala daeng? I'll be coming back there to take my test there and have some follow up with Dr Mattana.
April 2014
Cd4 - 400
VL - 36,000
No meds
--------------
June 2015
CD4 - ---
VL - 33 (after 51 days of Atripla)
Meds - Switched to Teevir (Generic of Atripla) from India

Offline pozinbkk

  • Member
  • Posts: 5
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2014, 11:16:24 PM »
Dear Poz24singapore and Ann,

Thanks a lot for your word of advice. For the time being, I will be waiting for my next visit with Dr. Sataporn and see what are the next steps. Unfortunately, this is Thai New Year, so everything is going a bit slow at the moment.

Thinking twice about it, BKK Christian Hospital would be the most "convenient" choice for me (location, opening hours). I need to keep on working, and cannot escape from work everytime i need to go to Dr, but if necessary, i can move to Bunrumgrad

Poz24singapore: how is the Red cross anonymous clinic? is it well organized or is there a lot of waiting time? And how do you proceed? Just take the prescription from your Dr., do the test and bring the results back to your Dr?

Thanks!

PozinBKK

Offline Ann

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  • Member
  • Posts: 28,134
  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2014, 03:29:31 AM »
Happy Thai New Year!

I hope you don't have to wait too long for your next appointment. Not because I think you're in any danger - I don't - but because I know how frustrating it is to have to wait for answers.

Hang in there. The important thing is that you know you're poz and can now take the steps you need to preserve your health. Keep us posted!

Ann
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

Offline poz24singapore

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  • Posts: 23
  • Positive
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2014, 12:53:19 AM »
Hi, i just came back from Bkk. I went there last wedenesday just to find out it was the last day of singkran and they are closed!(crap!) i just realised that there are lots of holidays in bkk. I went there as early as possible (before 7am) and at that time i was the third person. Oh wow! And since i dont speak thai, we had hard time communicating with the front desk officer, yeah it is "anonymous clinic" but who cares-attitude applies there. I set aside my humilation and just get the test done, i had arv genotype test and anal pap smear, the first test is very quick, just draw some blood and they instructed me to me wait for 8:30am (from 7:15am after my blood is taken). And be prepared with anal pap smear, i would prefer being prick by that needle rather than this test! And now, I have to wait for another 2-3 weeks for the test, its been a month since I discovered i'm positive, and I have to admit that waiting this for so long before my meds is killing me. And about getting the medication, as far as I observed in red cross clinic, you have to be there as early as 7:30 (their pharmacy opens exactly at 8:30) but some people there went early to be the first. The rule there is, first come first visit.
I hope to meet you there nextime, And keep safe as Songkran is done- demonstrators will starts to rally again.
April 2014
Cd4 - 400
VL - 36,000
No meds
--------------
June 2015
CD4 - ---
VL - 33 (after 51 days of Atripla)
Meds - Switched to Teevir (Generic of Atripla) from India

Offline poz24singapore

  • Member
  • Posts: 23
  • Positive
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2014, 12:58:03 AM »
And since I'm trying to save some $ from the treatment, Dr Mattana advised me to take the test in red cross which she said is reliable and also the medications. She's okay with it. I'll be seeing her again when my test result is out, get a prescription and buy the meds@red cross.
April 2014
Cd4 - 400
VL - 36,000
No meds
--------------
June 2015
CD4 - ---
VL - 33 (after 51 days of Atripla)
Meds - Switched to Teevir (Generic of Atripla) from India

Offline BKKKevin

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2014, 01:17:13 PM »
Do a Google search for "Benís Letter - Seeking HIV Treatment in Bangkok"...

Also once you read his story search for his followup post...

"An Update on Benís Experiences Getting HIV Treatment in Bangkok"


Offline xasxas

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  • Posts: 42
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2014, 09:59:48 PM »
I've been getting my meds and blood tests done at the Anonymous Clinic for the past 2 years or so and it's been a fairly good experience.

It's not a fancy medical facility as it's run by the Red Cross and is a non-profit organization, however everyone I've dealt with has been very professional and reasonably friendly - they don't get overly familiar with patients as the whole point of the place is that you can get your treatment without undue attention.

I've been told it can get pretty busy during peak hours but I've generally been serviced pretty quickly whenever I've gone.  In and out within the hour and had my test results e-mailed to me, so I don't have to wait around.

I've never run in to this first come, first served situation when it comes to buying my meds there - i.e. they've never run out of meds.  So I don't think you need to go there when it opens, so you can get your meds. 

Indeed, I buy 2 x 6 months worth of Atripla each time I go and I've never been denied, no matter what time I've gone.

As for the blood tests, you should certainly feel free to ask why your doctor didn't do the viral load and genotype tests.  You want to make sure to get the best possible treatment and these tests provide important information on what treatment you should get and what progress you've made towards controlling the virus.

I hope this helps.

Offline BKKKevin

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2014, 10:12:31 PM »
xasxas... Curious... what does a 30 day supply of Atripla cost at the RC Clinic?... Have you tried the Generic version they have?... if so what was the cost?

Thanks

Online Reggie

  • Member
  • Posts: 38
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2014, 02:00:22 AM »
I'm also on the atripla treatment 5 months now. Wondering also if the newer Stribild regime is available there as looking at future options which may help with better sleep than on atripla. Early days and main thing is that atripla doing it's job well but interested to see availability of stribild in Thailand and of course anyone's experience?
Reggie

Offline xasxas

  • Member
  • Posts: 42
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2014, 11:43:53 AM »
xasxas... Curious... what does a 30 day supply of Atripla cost at the RC Clinic?... Have you tried the Generic version they have?... if so what was the cost?

Thanks

Atripla costs around 2,640 baht for a monthly supply if I remember correctly. 

I haven't tried any generics yet but the receptionist did mention they had a generic called Teevir for 1,050 baht.  I am going to consult my ID next time I see him and see if it's alright to switch to a generic as it's so much cheaper.

Offline pozinbkk

  • Member
  • Posts: 5
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2014, 08:49:23 AM »
Just took a few days to relax.
Generally feeling much better psychologically.

Got my CD4 count result and baseline was 337, CD4%=16%, so Dr. recommended me to start directly on Atripla.
It is my 3rd day now on treatment, and I only felt very light side effects on the first day (dizzy). So far so good, I really cannot complain and hope it will keep this way.
We try Atripla for a week, (price was 813 Baht for 10 days). I guess I will get my monthly prescription by next week.


Also checked my Hep A, Hep B and Hep C antibodies for safety, but as Dr said, risk is very low as i got vaccinated when I was (still) a teenager.

Thanks a lot to everyone for your support,

Will keep you posted!

PozinBKK

Offline BKKKevin

  • Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2014, 10:32:59 AM »
Ask you doctor about Teevir... It is a generic version of Atripla that is available at the Red Cross Clinic for 1,050 for 30 pills (that's about $30 US Dollars for you guys stateside!...)

Online Reggie

  • Member
  • Posts: 38
Re: Positive in BKK
« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2014, 12:25:45 PM »
Thats great the effects of atripla not too bad on only your 3rd day, I think you should tolerate it well, see how it goes.My numbers improved fast on it so is encouraging (cd4 per cent went from 14 to 26 in 10 weeks and cd4's went from 79 to 357). The main thing is surpressing the viral load and I feel you are i line for ths. Best wishes, I know as someone newly diagnosed the scary feelings your feeling so feel confident that your on your way to having the virus under control!

Cheers

Reggie

 


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