Q and A


What is the difference between stopping meds and never starting them?

What is the difference between people who stop using treatments after months or years with those who are never taking any treatment?

In terms of progressing to AIDS. which one is worse?

thank you :)



Thanks – an interesting question.

There isn’t a simple direct answer though because treatment is now recommended for everyone, even with a high CD4 count.

Stopping treatment is also not recommended.

Also, there are such different response between different people. This means some people stayed off treatment for many years and their CD4 counts stayed high. But someone whose CD4 count was low before they started treatment is likely to quickly drop to this risky level again if they ever stop treatment.

Someone now on meds will be at a higher risk if they stop meds than someone whose CD4 count has stayed high without treatment, who stays off treatment.

In general though, the risks in each case will depend on the individual CD4 count and history. It is better to be on treatment.


  1. Roy Trevelion

    Hi Vuyisa, It’s great that your viral load has been undetectable at less than 50 for two years. But just one test for viral load at 192 could mean that it’s just a blip. You can ask your doctor for another test to see if it is a blip. You can find out more about blips here.

  2. Vuyisa

    My viral load is increasing now is 192 but it has been less than 40 for two years, also Im on meds my cd4 count is more than 800


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