Q and A


Am I at risk of colds if my CD4 count was only 1?

Hi I’m 49 years old, I tested positive for HiV 2 weeks ago and started Vulante TLD. My CD4 count was 1 which is very low. I have had HIV for about 6 years without knowing and it was a shock to find out.

How long does it take to get my CD4 levels up again? What if I catch a cold or something , does it mean I’m going to get very sick again because of my CD4 levels being so low?


Hi there

Thanks for writing and for sharing your experience,

If you haven’t had any serious helath problems yet, you have ben very lucky. Any CD4 count lower than 200 is very advanced HIV, especially if it is below 50.

It is really good that you are now on treatment with TLC, but please tell you doctor straight away if you start feeling worse. This i because starting with such a low CD4 count can sometimes cause other infections to become active, including, for example, TB.

This risk is mainly for the first 4-6 weeks as your CD4 count start to get higher. Everyone responds differently to treatment, so some people have a quicker CD4 increase than others. Pease don’t worry about how quickly it takes as a slower increase might even be better for your overall health,

It might, for example, take a year to get your CD4 count above 100 but this would still be very good.

HIV wont increase you risk of colds but might increase risk from other infections, such as COVID. You also wont get the best protection from COVID vaccines until your CD4 count is higher.

Your doctor should also have given you antibiotics to take until your CD4 get gets to at least over 200 cells/mm3. Please contact you clinic if you didn’t get these other meds.

best wishes



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