Definitions for "CD4 cell count"
Counting CD4 cells (cells that help the immune system fight infection) helps to determine the status of a person's immune system. The average CD4 count in a healthy adult is 1,150. The CD4 count for a person diagnosed with AIDS is less than 200. Cell counts are used to indicate the possibility of opportunistic infections and the type of treatment that should be used.
HIV attaches itself to an antigen, CD4, on the surface of certain lymphocytes (CD4 cells), which have an important role in the body's immune system. Cells infected with HIV are destroyed by other lymphocytes (see cytotoxicity) or other processes, so the CD4 cell count is low in untreated PWA's infected with HIV. In PWA's on antiviral therapy the CD4 cell count shows how effective treatment is in destroying the virus.
A blood test that is used to assess the state of the immune system. It is used to monitor HIV infection.