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Author Topic: Newly + with Some Questions  (Read 2928 times)

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Offline 0608

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  • Posts: 67
Newly + with Some Questions
« on: July 16, 2012, 07:18:44 PM »
Hello, everyone.  I found out I was positive on June 8th (hence my username).  I was a mess at first, but I've turned the corner in terms of coming to grips with it.  I just want to do all I can to become a healthier and--as corny as it sounds--better person.

I really want to say a big thank you to people who've posted so much useful and reassuring info on this forum.  It made a huge difference, I'm sure for many, many people in our position.

I'm going to visit with a doctor in a few weeks, and I had a few questions that I wanted to ask the forum.  Feel free to comment on whichever ones you want to.

1) With everything I've read, I'm leaning towards the Truvada/Isentress combo as it seems to have the mildest side effects (I don't mind taking pills 2x day).  Does anybody (perhaps people who are on it) have any comments or anything you wish you'd known before starting taking them?

2) I know that adherence is a huge issue.  When you're taking pills 2 times a day, is it absolutely necessary to take them exactly 12 hours apart? (e.g. 8 AM and then 8 PM)  Or can there be a little bit of variance, like 8 AM and 10 PM, for example?

3) If a person on such a combo has a change in work schedule or goes on an extended trip to somewhere in another time zone, could he or she change the times a little bit, like adjusting from an 8 AM & 8 PM cycle to a 12 PM & 12 AM cycle?  Or would that one-time period of a few extended hours without meds present a serious risk?

4) Finally, I know that most of us keep track of our CD4 count and our Viral Load count.  However, I've noticed many posters also record a % count, and I'm still not clear on what that is called or what it measures.  A (hopefully simple) clarification would be greatly appreciated.

5) Sorry, I've got one last one.  This one may sound strange, but it's actually weighing on me.  Shortly before I found out my status, I had an eyebrow tattooing session (very gay, I know).  I had it done, and then a female family member had it done right after me.  We went to a reputable salon, but I can't help this nagging thought that somehow my family member might have been placed under risk if the lady who did the tattooing somehow didn't change to a new needle...  I'm actually staying with my relative right now, and I'm kinda paranoid about things, I make sure I place my toothbrush away from hers, I wipe the toilet cover with a tissue after I use the bathroom, I make sure my dental floss is far from anything she'd likely pick up...  Did anyone else go through things like this?

Okay, guys.  Sorry for all the questions.  I just want to arm myself with as much information as I can before starting treatment; I hope you understand.  God bless us all. :)
« Last Edit: July 16, 2012, 07:43:21 PM by 0608 »

Offline surf18

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  • Posts: 532
Re: Newly + with Some Questions
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2012, 08:59:29 PM »
Sorry about your dx. Not sure you need to be so anal about the dental floss, and certainly not the toilet seat. Your not a leper, and the virus is very hard to transmit. You can't get it from blow jobs ,kissing etc. Educate yourself on transmission so you can chill out.
Very likely tattoo place changed needles and your relative is safe.

On my meds, I have two hour window either way. So for instance my morning dose I take at 7 am. So i can take it at 5 am or 9 am. See what I mean? A two hour window either way. I was given this green light when I went undetectable.

When I went to SEattle I was told to just stick to my usual times. So that would mean my 7 am eastern time meant I take it at 7 west coast time. I was given many different answers with this and chose to stick with what my dr said.

Cd 4 is the huge test but some people put more umph on the cd %. They say % is more stable and less likely to fluctuate on time of day ,etc. More of a relatic barometer of where you are.  Both are important . You want a high cd 4 and high cd %.

Offline jayson702

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  • Posts: 24
Re: Newly + with Some Questions
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2012, 10:24:45 PM »
Hi there!

Sorry to hear about your diagnosis but I'm glad you found us.

I'm on the exact same regimen you posted and I haven't had any side effects what so ever. *Knock on wood*

I've been on the meds since 4/16 this year, so today marks my 2nd month. When I started I had a viral load of over 200,000 and a CD4 of 5! Yikes!!

But my CD4 has jumped to 42 and my viral load is 73. I'm almost underecable, but not quite there yet. But in my eyes, the meds have made a huge difference for me. I feel energetic every day and I'm working out every day too. As for percentage I can't quite answer that since I dont know much about it. I know my CD4 % is 4% but I don't know what the other percentages are. I'll be sure to ask my doc next time I'm in his office.

If you gots any questions, feel free to ask!

Offline 0608

  • Member
  • Posts: 67
Re: Newly + with Some Questions
« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2012, 04:36:43 PM »
Thank you for the info, you guys.  It's very helpful, especially how the meds-taking time variance works.  And it's true, I'm being overly paranoid when it comes to putting my family members at risk.  It's like my head knows what's up, but my heart's got a mind of its own.  I guess it's still feeling rather fragile, LOL.  Anyhow, thanks again!


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