For over 5 years, Stempath Laboratories' dedicated staff has diligently provided quality laboratory services to the medical community. These efforts have earned Stempath a distinguished reputation of excellence, integrity and leadershipKnow more..
The term "viral load" refers to the amount of HIV in a sample of your blood. When your viral load is high, you have more HIV in your body, and that means your immune system is not fighting HIV as well.
A viral load test is a lab test that measures the number of HIV virus particles in a milliliter of your blood. These particles are called "copies." A viral load test helps provide information on your health status and how well antiretroviral therapy (ART – treatment with HIV medicines) is controlling the virus. ART involves taking a combination of HIV medicines (called an HIV regimen) every day. ART can't cure HIV, but it can help you live a longer, healthier life and reduce your risk of HIV transmission. The goal of ART is to move your viral load down, ideally to undetectable levels. In general, your viral load will be declared "undetectable" if it is under 40 to 75 copies in a sample of your blood. The exact number depends on the lab that analyzes your test. Having an "undetectable" viral load doesn't mean that the virus is completely gone from your body, just that it is below what a lab test can find. You still have HIV and need to stay on ART to remain healthy.
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