Starting HIV Treatment
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Starting HIV treatment is like opening yourself up to the possibility of a prolonged, healthy life. Watch this for starter tips.
Transcript: Ever hear the phrase "When one door closes, another one opens?" Starting HIV treatment is like opening...
Ever hear the phrase "When one door closes, another one opens?" Starting HIV treatment is like opening yourself up to the possibility of a prolonged, healthy life. Treatment can make the amount of HIV in your blood-also called your viral load -- very low or even undetectable. It will also raise your CD4 count-indicating your immune system is rebounding. Opinions vary about how low your CD-4 count can fall before it's time to start taking antiretroviral medication; however, experts suggest that EARLY TREATMENT is the most effective in the long run.When you do start treatment, your doctor will likely prescribe a cocktail of 3 to 4 antiretroviral medications-called HAART or highly active antiretroviral therapy. Your overall health will impact the SPECIFIC cocktail you're prescribed, as will the existence of any pre-existing conditions, like hepatitis B or C. It's also the time to be HONEST with your doctor about personal issues you have, such as depression or substance abuse. Then you can work together to find solutions -- including ways to make medication affordable. Some initial side effects like nausea, vomiting and headaches CAN make it tough to stick to your treatment in the early days. But many of these side effects are temporary so STICK WITH IT, it will get better. But be sure to alert your doctor to any persistent or severe side effects.To make sure your treatment stays effective, it's CRITICAL that you follow your medication regimen PRECISELY. If you DO happen to miss a dose, take it as soon as you realize. But don't double up, if it's time for your next dose. If you've got questions about what to do, get in touch with your doctor before you take your next dose. For more information about your HIVtreatment, check out other videos in this series.More »
Last Modified: 2013-10-21 | Tags »
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