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CD4 counts and infections

for Veterans and the Public

CD4 counts and infections

The weaker your immune system, the more likely you are to get an opportunistic infection.

In general, here's how a CD4 count relates to your risk of OIs:

Above 500 CD4 cells
No unusual infections are likely to occur.

200-500 CD4 cells
There is an increased risk for certain conditions, such as shingles, thrush, skin infections, bacterial sinus and lung infections, and TB.

<200 CD4 cells
There is an increased risk for PCP (pneumonia), and you should begin treatment to prevent it.

<100 CD4 cells
If counts are below 100, preventive treatment should begin for MAC and toxoplasmosis (if not already on PCP prophylaxis that helps prevent toxoplasmosis, like trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole).

<50 CD4 cells
There is an increased risk for cytomegalovirus