Q and A

Question

How can I get my CD4 count to increase?

Hi – what can I do to help increase my CD4? I have just found out I am at undetectable level after 8 weeks on treatment which is great. my CD4 has gone from 95 to 166 (after 4 weeks) and is now 173 after 8 weeks. I know it can take time for the CD4 to recover when the base level is low as mine but I am still disheartened as I was really hoping for it to have rebounded a bit better than this. What can I do to help it increase? Many thanks for your advice.

Answer

Thank you for your question.

Your CD4 count is doing really well and increasing nicely. Most people take 6-12 months for their CD4 counts to increase significantly. You are doing really well and have nothing to feel disheartened about.

There is very little anyone can do to increase their CD4 counts accept using HIV treatment which you are already doing. However, there are some things that you can do to maintain your CD4 count and ensure it stays up. This includes eating a healthy balanced diet, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, not getting stressed out, not smoking, drinking alcohol in moderation and generally looking after yourself.


Information on this website is provided by treatment advocates and offered as a guide only. Decisions about your treatment should always be taken in consultation with your doctor.

60 comments

  1. Hi

    It sounds like your friend should talk to her doctor about whether HIV treatment is available.

    In the UK, treatment is not recommended until the CD4 count is around 350. Although some people use treatment much earlier, there is not good evidence to know whether or not this is better in the long-term.

    See this guideline for more information about treatment:
    http://i-base.info/guides/starting

    It is good that you are helping your friend if she has just been diagnosed and is learning about this.

  2. My friend age about 31 her cd4 count is 356 what to do please suggest

  3. Hi Smith

    Your friend’s doctor is giving good advice.

    In the UK, treatment is not recommended until the CD4 count is around 350. Although some people use treatment much earlier, there is not good evidence to know whether or not this is better in the long-term.

    General advice for good health is important for HIV positive people, just like everyone else. This includes eating a balanced diet, keeping physically and mentally active, reducing stress, not smoking etc.

    Although these are good, they won’t directly help with the CD4 count. The only way to increase the CD4 count is to start ARVs when these are needed. The only way to stop the CD4 count getting lower, would be to start HIV meds a bit earlier.

  4. my friend’s cd4 count is 833 nd the doctor said he dnt have to start arv treatment till his cd4 drops to 350. what can he do to maintain his cd4? plz waiting for ur reply through my mail. thanks

  5. Hi Sravz

    This guide has more information about HIV and treatment:
    http://i-base.info/guides/starting

    Any CD4 count about 350 is still pretty good. You have time to learn about treatment and how it can help you still lead a long and active life.

    I hope you are getting support to help you through the next few weeks. Finding out your are HIV positive is still touch, but it does get easier.

  6. Hi
    I came to know recently that I’m HIV positive my cd4 count is 423,plz let me know about my situation and how can I increase my cd4 count.

  7. Hi Pratap,
    It is very good that you have started taking ARVS. Even when somebody has a very low CD4 count like this ARVs are very effective at treating HIV.

    ARVs are the only medicines that can improve your CD4 count. This may take many months but just by being on treatment you are protecting your body from further damage from HIV.

    Because your CD4 count is less than 50 there is a risk of developing something called IRIS after starting treatment. It is important that you are monitored closely by your doctor- including having your eyes checked for a virus called CMV. You should talk to your doctor about any symptoms you experience. You can read more about IRIS here.

  8. Hello sir,I found HIV positive 1 last week&my cd4 count is 37 is it serious how can I improve my cd4 count plzz can u suggest I had a physician guidelines I am started my medicine plzz suggest what is time to recover

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