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Exams and Tests

Getting tested for HIV can be scary; however, the condition is treatable so it is important to get tested if you think you have been exposed. If you test positive, early detection and monitoring of HIV will help your doctor determine whether the disease is progressing and when to start treatment.

Your doctor may recommend counseling before and after HIV testing, and it is usually available at the hospital or clinic where you will be tested. This will give you an opportunity to:

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HIV, AIDS, and the CD4 Count

CD4 cells are a type of white blood cell that fights infection. Another name for them is T-helper cells. CD4 cells are made in the spleen, lymph nodes, and thymus gland, which are part of the lymph or infection-fighting system. CD4 cells move throughout your body, helping to identify and destroy germs such as bacteria and viruses. The CD4 count measures the number of CD4 cells in a sample of your blood drawn by a needle from a vein in your arm. Along with other tests, the CD4 count helps tell how...

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  • Discuss your fears about being tested.
  • Learn how to reduce your risk of becoming infected if your test is negative.
  • Learn how to keep from spreading HIV to others if your test is positive.
  • Think about personal issues, such as how having HIV will affect you socially, emotionally, professionally, and financially.
  • Learn what you need to do to stay healthy as long as possible.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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