My aunty is HIV positive from last 7 years.(since 2011).
Her CD4 count is always maintained at between 700 to 900 without any medicine. As we are checking for every 4 moths or 6 months. Doctors (HIV Specialist) also checking her regularly and saying she is ELITE CONTROLLER. She absolutely fine in all respects. They asked us to get some tests related to upcoming change of other complication against HIV. we got it done, all reports are fine. ONE WEEK BACK, CD4 COUNT IS around 1300... is very good count.
But doctor are still advising to start ART. Is it correct to start at CD4 count of 1300 also ?
I am postponing every time, as she is fine with CD4 count from last 8 years and present count is also very good. We are having fear of side affects with ART Medicine and expenditure is not issue.
So Kindly suggest me what is best advice.
It is good for your aunt's health to start ART.
Welcome to HCM.
The CD4 count of your aunt since last seven years is maintained good but but recent guidelines released by Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Govt. of XXXXXXX is suggesting treatment for all in HIV infection so it is better for your aunt's health to start ART because these guidelines are supported by WHO or CDC after extensive research.
At present your aunt is asymptomatic but the HIV manifestations can develop even after 10 years of infection also and if she take ART this will subside so as per my opinion she can start ART treatment without any fear of side effects. If any further query is there feel free to ask me again.
Ok you are suggesting as per guidelines.
But as CD4 count is around 1300... why ART required practically and technically... ?
what are the side affects of ART... general and serious ?
Each drug has few side effects.
Welcome back and thanks for follow-up.
You are absolutely right that if CD4 count is good then what is the need for ART. It is helpful because if there is virus in the body many changes or processes are going on which further leads to sudden irreversible damage to the body or any perticular system. If patient is on ART the things will be in control and no additional damage to the body will occur.
As far as side effects are concerned than no drug is free of side effect but if taken as per instructions of HIV specialist and proper care is taken one can live normal life as others with ART so don't get feared or worried about side effects and start ART. If still you have any doubt feel free to ask me again and I am here to help you out always.
thank you for you reply.
can we wait some more time... like CD4 count will come down around 700 or 600 to start ART...
It is better to start as early as possible.
Welcome back and thanks for the follow-up.
You had already waited till now so it is better to start ART as early as possible to prevent any further damage to the body or its symstems. Don't get worried or tensed about the side effects or any other thing and go for ART. If still any query is there you can ask me any time.