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Newly Diagnosed -Strange numbers-

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Motul86:
Hello everyone. I tested positive on February 9th. By the 12th I was already taking meds (Viktarby). Also on the 12th I had blood tests done and days later my CD4 came in, I was glad to know it was at a healthy 760. More days passed and earlier today I just received my viral load at a perplexing 113/ml. CDC states that anything below 200 is considered viral suppression (again, before medication even started).

Im confused. Should I even be taking meds? Am I HIV resistant? I was taking Truvada Prep before but very undisciplined. Any remarks are greatly appreciated!

Motul86:
This is my viral load result. I can't stress enough that I hadn't been taken meds at the time the sample was taken. I now have been on meds for exactly 1 week:

Jim Allen:
Hiya.

Sorry to hear about the diagnosis but welcome to the forum and I hope you find the support you need here.

I removed your other posting as it was duplicate and the rule is not to post our problems in other peoples threads. Hope this makes sense.


--- Quote ---Should I even be taking meds?
--- End quote ---

The short answer is yes. Treatment is recommended nowadays, regardless of VL/CD4 counts for better health outcomes and reduced mortality.  https://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=2276.msg744247#msg744247

Untreated HIV viral loads will go up and down. With treatment, this will be suppressed and mirrored in other fluids/tissue.  A few months/year after acquiring HIV, the VL load might be low, and CD4's somewhat recovered. A temporary settling or levelling off point, I suppose.

An illustration of the above.



--- Quote ---More days passed and earlier today I just received my viral load at a perplexing 113/ml. CDC states that anything below 200 is considered viral suppression (again, before medication even started).
--- End quote ---

Yes/No, anything under 200 is considered UD in terms of forward transmission. All you have to do is keep it medically suppressed below 200 for 6 months by continuing to take the meds so you can't sexually pass it on. https://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=71848.0

Treatment wise, it generally accepted under 50 copies is fully suppressed/UD for best outcomes. Some labs can monitor lower levels, like 20 copies. Anyhow, you have a little way to go still.


--- Quote ---Am I HIV resistant? I was taking Truvada Prep before but very undisciplined.

--- End quote ---

There is no reason to believe your HIV has resistance to the meds. If the medication does not fully suppress and keep the virus suppressed within 6 months you might need to switch but again, no reason to believe its an issue.


--- Quote ---Viktarby
--- End quote ---
I've never heard of this one. What's in it?

How are you feeling/doing otherwise?
When is your next follow-up with the doctor?

Best, Jim

https://www.poz.com/basics/hiv-basics/starting-hiv-treatment
https://www.poz.com/basics/hiv-basics/switching-hiv-treatment

Motul86:
Thanks for your reply! I'm going to strongly suggest to my Dr that I get off the meds and simply monitor my levels every 3 months to make sure the viral load is kept at bay as was the case before I started taking meds. I see no point in taking medication for a viral level so low, it seems almost like overkill, especially considering the very important side effects they can cause over time.

The partner studies determined any VL below 200 to be untransmissable. Furthermore, the first study of its kind, in the year 2000 in the UK, determined such level at 2000, so a full log higher. Also as a 100% bottom it's also a lot harder to pass it on.

I feel like with a VL of 113 I have much leeway and medication is not necessary as much as monitoring and keeping a close look at my levels to make sure my CD4 stays high and VL stays low. If/when things change, then I would start medication, but this can be years down the line, potentially.

Benefits of waiting? 1) Better drugs/treatments come on the market. Maybe even a cure now with the mRna technology used for Covid as seen in a very promising light to prevent/cure other viruses/illnesses. But at the very least, the once a month or twice a year injections.

2) Less toxicity from medication, less strain on kidneys and liver.

I am stubborn, yes, but I feel like I have science on my side on this one. I just need to convince my DR.

Jim Allen:
End of the day it's your choice.

I don't agree with what you posted I say this based on the studies, evidence and personal experience but each to their own. With modern meds even the elite controllers are recommended to start treatment for long term better health outcomes rather than delaying treatment.

However, do wish you all the best with your treatment choices. It's something that we all have to decide for ourselves.

The 2000 VL no transmission is just nonsense. Context to this topic is looking at more than one study with the lowest recorded transmission at a VL 362. We know without treatment spikes in VL can happen in other tissue/fluids.

Anyhow, take care.  Hope you are otherwise feeling/doing okay.

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