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Author Topic: Just tested positive  (Read 3666 times)

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Offline NewAdventure1

  • Member
  • Posts: 41
Just tested positive
« on: July 02, 2014, 02:45:15 PM »
Hi all, new here.

I went in for a physical, I start nursing school this fall. I had not had an STD pane in over a year. I had fears that I was infected and did not want to deal with it. I had taken an at-home OraQuick April 28Th, and it was positive. 
My Doctor asked me if I had any fears of being infected, I told her yes. She ordered a panel and performed the tests.
A week went by and I kept checking my medical information online, day to day results come in and so far all were negative except HIV screen. My PCP called and requested I come in to find out all my results, I scheduled an appointment for the next day. Immediately after I got off the phone with her I logged into my online medical information and read the news: REACTIVE, REPEATEDLY REACTIVE.

I was numb.
The next day I went in for my appointment and was read the news. My PCP then referred me to my local Infectious Disease Office. I was diagnosed on Tuesday and already had an appointment for Friday with the ID Office. 
Very scared and not sure what to expect, I went to my appointment,  the staff is wonderful, very caring and willing to help in anyway. Labs were taken and appointment made to see what Wood be next and to receive vaccines for nursing school.
The next week I was read my results, VL is 787 and CD4 was 881. The Nurse Practitioner was very pleased and said we caught it early. After lots of questions being asked, she gave me the option to start treatment right away or wait. She said she wanted to put me on Complera.
My struggle is how am I going to afford it? I have health insurance and my insurance classified Complera as a specialty drug through mail order only (Prime Therapeutics through Blue Cross.) My copay for the drug will be $250/a month. My case worker had me sign up for the Gilead Copay program.
I have questions hopefully some of you can help me with:
Would you guys recommend starting treatment right away? I have read it is recommended to start right away. Also with this added stress of Nursing School added to my plate, would it be a good idea due to increased stress, which will take a toll on my immune system as is?
Anyone have experience with insurance and copay assistance for complera? What outcomes did you have?

Thank you guys for any responses! :)
02/2013 Tested Negative
Exposure between 02/2013-10/2013
06/03/2014 Tested Positive
06/06/2014  VL 787 CD4 881 38%
07/08/2014 VL 1756 CD4 813 38%
07/27/2014 Started Complera
09/08/2014 Undetectable VL!
11/2014- Undetectable VL
2/2015-:Undetectable CD4 771 39%
7/2/2015: VL UD

Offline Jeff G

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  • How am I doing Beren ?
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2014, 04:34:53 PM »
Welcome to the Forum . I'm sure lots a people will chime on on our personal opinions about when to start meds so I will be the first .

You have good lab numbers and have time to adjust to the news and digest your diagnosis so do not feel like you are in immediate danger or be pressured into making quick treatment choices for the next month or two ... unless you choose too .

I fall into the treat early category when it comes to HIV but that does not mean a mad dash to the pharmacy in all cases . I personally think living with untreated HIV in the long term is not the best idea even if you have low to stable lab numbers unless a person is an elite controller .

Its a shock to find out you have HIV so give yourself some time and know we will be here if you need a shoulder .
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Offline Tonny2

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  • Posts: 1,355
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2014, 10:27:23 PM »
 8)Hi and welcome

I've been taking meds for more than 19 years, and I just started getting help with my co-payments, and sure you will be able to inform yourself about this programas...like Jeff said, your number are pretty good, I hate you for that hahah, so you have lotd of time to try to digest the bad news andat the same time good news, because now you know you got the bug, you got it early, so you can wait and get informed and make the right decition when to start...I'm glad you feel confortable with your doctor and health providers, I think that it's the key for a succesful treatment...I wish you lots of luck, and don't be so hard on yourself, remember that now you are sure you have HIV and not AIDS...congrats for decided to get youself tested    ojo

Offline mitch777

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,084
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2014, 10:54:14 AM »
Hi NewA,

I'm not sure where you live but assuming it is here in the US. I would suggest you contact your states ADAP (Aids Drug Assistance Program). It's called CADAP here in Connecticut. If you qualify with your particular states income guidelines ADAP will pay your deductible, not just for Complera but for many other meds.

Another suggestion is to check in with your local ASO. Again, depending on your income, you might be eligible for Ryan White assistance. (They would also be able to figure out if you qualify for ADAP)

The stress of being diagnosed is understandable but it does get easier. There are a lot of terrific people here to offer support. Welcome to the forums.
33 years hiv+ with a curtsy.

Offline gadawg1979

  • Member
  • Posts: 142
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2014, 04:29:22 AM »
I work through my ASO and have insurance that pays all but 100 bucks.  They were able to get me a co-pay card to cover the 100 bucks... Treat it early and know that you will have lots of labs but most likely out live your peers....
Diagnosed March 2012
Initial CD4- 156 VL 200K (started Complera) Genotype test no resistance
First labs on meds CD4- 246 VL 2K Taken after 30 days on Complera
90 Day labs VL 306 No CD4 Drawn
8/21/2012 CD4 474 VL Undetectable (40) %20.6
11/27/2012 CD 4 522 VL Undetectable (40)
2/14/2013 CD 4 464 VL Undetecable (30) 19.6%
6/8/3013 CD 4 528 VL Undetectable (30)
9/24/2013 CD 4 546 VL Undetectable (40)
1/30/2014 CD4 560 VL Undetectable (40) 22 %
6/19/2014 CD4 584 Vl Undetecable (30)

Offline Almost2late

  • Member
  • Posts: 914
  • Life goes on
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #5 on: July 04, 2014, 11:25:59 AM »
Welcome to the forums NA1,

I'm glad you found out sooner than later.. for what its worth, I found out later once I had aids and pcp so I was forced to quit smoking which after doing the numbers cost me more than my co-pays.. now I got help with co-pays through the drug companies that offer the hiv meds which I found out through these forums  ;)

Good luck to you
"Being happy is a
very personal thing,
and it really has
nothing to do with
anyone else."
- Abraham Hicks

Offline NewAdventure1

  • Member
  • Posts: 41
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2014, 08:58:20 AM »
Hey guys,

Thanks for the replies. I met with my primary care doctor and she is starting me on Zoloft to help with such a huge life change (I have an extensive hx of depression and anxiety)

As for my HIV meds deal I meet with my Specialist on Tuesday to discuss the plan. I am trying to develop my questions to ask my Care provider. Will keep it updated on here.
02/2013 Tested Negative
Exposure between 02/2013-10/2013
06/03/2014 Tested Positive
06/06/2014  VL 787 CD4 881 38%
07/08/2014 VL 1756 CD4 813 38%
07/27/2014 Started Complera
09/08/2014 Undetectable VL!
11/2014- Undetectable VL
2/2015-:Undetectable CD4 771 39%
7/2/2015: VL UD

Offline wolfter

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,397
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2014, 09:41:16 PM »
Welcome to the forums.  There is great debate as to when to start meds.  Being recently diagnosed and having such great numbers, you have plenty of time to debate it.  You've been given some excellent suggestions on contacting different sources that might be able to assist with your drugs and medical visits and such.

You seem to be handling the news pretty well and I hope it continues that way.  I was in the midst of nursing school also when I was diagnosed but that was over 25 years ago.  :)  good luck with your schooling and continued good health.

best wishes
Being honest is not wronging others, continuing the dishonesty is.

Offline poz24singapore

  • Member
  • Posts: 26
  • Positive
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2014, 07:20:28 PM »
Sorry to hear that but welcome to the forum! :)
April 2014
Cd4 - 400
VL - 36,000
No meds
June 2014
CD4 - ---
VL - 33 (after 51 days of Atripla)
Meds - Switched to Teevir
January 2015
CD4 - 804
VL - <20
Meds - Teevir

Offline NewAdventure1

  • Member
  • Posts: 41
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2014, 03:26:11 PM »
Hello all.

Thanks for the replies of kind words. I had my appointmwnt with my ID staff today. Seems I will be starting Complera. My ID sent in my prescription to CVS Caremark mail order, now the waiting game to receive the call with cost. I signed up for Gileads copay assistance program card and received it in the mail. After my insurance I was told roughly I would owe $250/month. Not sure how much the copay card will hwlp. Anyone have any personal experience?
02/2013 Tested Negative
Exposure between 02/2013-10/2013
06/03/2014 Tested Positive
06/06/2014  VL 787 CD4 881 38%
07/08/2014 VL 1756 CD4 813 38%
07/27/2014 Started Complera
09/08/2014 Undetectable VL!
11/2014- Undetectable VL
2/2015-:Undetectable CD4 771 39%
7/2/2015: VL UD

Offline absopozilutely

  • Member
  • Posts: 408
  • Love to chat/text/talk/encourage!
Re: Just tested positive
« Reply #10 on: July 09, 2014, 01:31:02 AM »
I believe Gilead will cover up to $400, so you should be good. You can also just go to complera.com and it will tell you how much. I have one for stribild and it will cover $400 but kaiser doesn't take it, so damn, only costs me $25 a month.
12/18 Infected
2/4 12:22pm tested POZ via ORAquick
2/19 WB Confirmation
2/4-2/19 VL 104,678 CD4 407
3/2 Genotype back, and Started Complera
4/2-CD4 688 38% and VL 1,600
5/1-CD4 592 42% and VL 336
5/22-CD4 732 31% and VL 109 :( STILL NOT UD!
5/31 Switched to Stribild :( I'll miss you Complera!
6/19 CD4 508 35% and VL UD!!!!! Crying at work like a baby.
9/19 CD4 799 46% VL UD yayyyy


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