I have always had a low CD4 count. My whole life my CD4 has never gotten above 20. But now, at the age of 26 I can finally say with happiness that my CD4 count is above 200, right where it is supposed to be!
I have always had trouble taking my pills. I would miss whole days and doses. It is only until recently, within the past two years, that I have started taking them consistently and on a tight schedule – that has been the main reason for my CD4 count rising.
I only got really serious about taking my meds when I was diagnosed with cancer in 2010. It was non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma stage 2- which was HIV related. I had a big tumor on the back of my left leg that had to be removed and it left a hole that you could sink your fist down into. I had to go through 6 months of chemo, which was horrible. I had to change the dressings on my leg twice a day and it was extremely painful, the only time I didn’t feel pain was when I was asleep. They finally put a skin graft over the hole in 2011 and then I had to do a month of rehab on my leg, so I could walk again. I decided I never wanted to go through anything like that again and taking my pills was worth it if I could prevent that. Ever since then I have been very consistent in taking my meds and I really hate missing any doses.
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