What are the different tests that help monitor my HIV?

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March 19, 2021
Am I legally required to share my HIV status with others?
March 19, 2021

What are the different tests that help monitor my HIV?

Your health care provider will use blood tests to monitor your HIV infection. These tests help your health care provider make decisions about changes to your treatment.

CD4 Count

  • Your CD4 count is the number of CD4 cells you have in your blood. CD4 cells help your body fight infections.
  • HIV attacks and lowers the number of CD4 cells in your blood. This makes it difficult for your body to fight infections.
  • Your health care provider will check your CD4 count every 3 to 6 months.

Viral Load Test

  • Viral load is the amount of HIV in your blood.
  • Your health care provider will use a viral load test to determine your viral load.
  • When your viral load is high, you have more HIV in your body. This means your immune system is not fighting HIV very well.
  • You should have a viral load test
    • every 4 to 6 months,
    • before you take a new HIV medicine, and
    • around 2 to 8 weeks after starting or changing medicine.