Q and A


When should I start ARVs?

I was diagnosed last February, with a CD4 of 750. I’ve heard that it can take 5-10 years before you feel the effects of HIV. I’m not ready to start treatment yet, but when should I start?


Thanks for getting in touch.

HIV affects people differently, therefore it’s simply not possible to say how long it will be before your body can no longer fight HIV. It could 10 years, or it could be a lot less. This is why its important to be on ARVs.

ARVs will control your HIV. They’ll also, once your HIV is under control ensure that you cannot transmit HIV when having sex without a condom: https://i-base.info/u-equals-u/

Its also recommended that everyone who is positive should be on medication, this is due to the results of the start study. https://i-base.info/start-study/


  1. Roy Trevelion

    Hi Radi,

    Unfortunately we don’t have resources to answer more questions about HIV testing and risk. But all FAQs testing questions are answered here.

  2. Radi

    Please help I have been having hiv symptoms for almost eight months now. But I keep testing negative and the pains I’m having are unbearable. I have been to lots of Dr’s and the ran lots of test but they always come back normal. What should I do

  3. Roy Trevelion

    Hi Harry,

    Your question is answered here http://i-base.info/qa/15136

  4. Harry

    Hello, just a week before I had a protected sex (on condom) with unknown person who I am not sure is infected by HIV. Sex was just for few seconds. Now since two days I am suffering from cold is this a sign of early stage of HIV. Please answer as I am very much afraid


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