Confirmed viral rebound

The second test can confirm viral rebound if the result is still detectable. It will often be much higher.

But only if you have been taking your meds. See Figure 2.

The higher it goes, the more likely that resistance is starting. This will first be to one drug. Over time it can include all of the drugs in your ART.

Most guidelines recommend changing treatment.

This is because resistance can still develop when viral load is still low (between 50 – 500).

Figure 2. Viral load rebound

 changing 2015 Fig2 confirmed viral rebound

If the second viral load test is still detectable, this is more likely to be a real rebound. But only if someone has been taking their meds.

This can be a reason to change treatment.

Last updated: 1 August 2021.