Medical update: An amazing check-up

To refresh your memory, I have been off one of my HIV meds (I forgot it at home) since the day after Craig’s ultimately fatal accident on April 24.

While I stayed on everything else while in Perth, I went off everything – more or less – when I had quite a breakdown upon my return to Toronto over the May holiday weekend. I did the obligatory blood test a couple of weeks ago and was anxious, and not optimistic, about the results which I received today from my HIV specialist.

Viral load: undetectable. I can hardly believe it (and I’m still skeptical)
CD-4 count: 340 or so (an immune system snapshot; this is a significant drop but “not surprising”, given the circumstances, according to my doc)

He wonders how my diabetes might have changed through this process. Surprise, surprise I haven’t been monitoring my sugars 🙂

So my only assignment for the next week is to poke my fingers a couple times a day. If my sugars are high, I’ll call him and go back on one of the diabetes meds.

In any case I’ll be seeing him again next week.

Meanwhile, we are in agreement that I could use a break from all my other meds. The unitended break has not been too harmful so far, apparently, so he is not concerned about a major HIV relapse happening in a matter of days or weeks. When I do go back on whatever combination is found to be workable I will need to carry an alarm to remind me to take my meds because I have fallen away from some good discipline along those lines.

“Fletch”, as he is affectionately known, was genuinely sorry to hear about everything that has happened over the past couple of months and seemed to understand how I could come off the rails as I did.  For as long as I’ve been a patient, some seventeen years, we have not needed to discuss my drinking problem.  Abstinent, as I was most of that time, it had not been an issue until recently.

He asked me how I was doing mentally.

I said, “Better now.” I told him that drinking, as I was, affected how compliant I could be with the bipolar meds. Getting back on those was my first priority when I started to sober up a week ago.

Obviously he is pleased with the steps I have taken to recover.

I feel like I’ve caught a big break – again. Not that I am not due for a break or two, because I can honestly believe that I do deserve to get through these days. I have been a good, involved, compliant patient for many years and Fletch even refers to me as one of his “stars”. Coming from a man with his unbeatable credentials I feel privileged to receive such accolades.  Craig, Fletch pointed out, did not die from HIV/AIDS and he wants me to hold on to the hope that I may not either.

I deserve good health. I deserve recovery. I am going to do what I can to make sure I make lemonade (sugar-free if necessary) out of at least some of the lemons.

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5 thoughts on “Medical update: An amazing check-up

  1. Yahoo!Congratulations.You do deserve a break.
    Blood result lingo is unfamiliar to me but it sounds like great news.
    I have the feeling that you`re going to be one of those crusty old guys that`s interviewed on his 100th birthday and when asked to explain the secret of your longevity,you`ll say that you haven`t finished your book yet.
    Undetectable is usually good news unless you`re talking about some politicians and the presence of grey matter.

  2. I saw my doc today too. I blogged that visit on my site. I’m glad for you that the numbers are good and nominal. I guess this shows that even through the darkness your body stood up to everything that was thrown at it.

    Not to mention all of us who supported you and the family through such trying times. Now that you are taking “Steps” to stay sober, that will also impact your numbers.

    Remember wise advice: “What the brain tells the body, the body eventually believes. So Think Good Thoughts.”


  3. Kenn, I’m so happy to hear this news! I haven’t had regular internet access, so I haven’t been able to keep up with your blog lately- but I still think of you and pray for you as often as the LORD brings you to mind.

    Keep your chin up.

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