Q and A


Can other infection lower my CD4 count?

Please can you answer my question, can there be other infection or virus that can cause the drop in my CD4 count to 320 beside from HIV? I really needs to know.


If you have any form infection from either a virus, bacteria, fungal or parasite (from common cold to other opportunistic illness) then it mean that your immune system has been compromise and there will be a drop in your CD4 count. The level to which it drops also depends on how long you had the infection and how strong your immune system.

When someone is newly diagnosed with HIV, their viral load will goes up and their CD4 count will drop.  Your CD4 will increase after starting treatment, your immune system is often able to deal with these infections by itself again.  The normal range of CD4 count for someone who is HIV negative can be anywhere form 400 to 1600 and 2-3% of people are naturally higher or lower than this.  This is the reason why you need to have an antibody test, and not just viral load.

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.


  1. Hi Michael – I hope you are both doing okay as finding out you are positive is difficult. At least you can help each other with this and support each other. If you have been having sex without condoms up to now, then the only reasons to start using condoms now are concern for STIs or pregnancy. You can’t tell who became positive first from your CD4 counts. It is better thought to just look forwards in looking after both of your health. Your own CD4 count means it is more important for you to use HIV treatment now, because is is less than 300.

  2. Michael

    Hi – I am Nkosinathi, please help me, my gf tested for HIV and find that she is positive and I decided to test as well. It came back with positive. When we check our CD4 count mine is 243 and hers is 1200. Does this means I got infected first or what? Since we both positive can we have unprotected sex?

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