‘The HIV in my body is having a live concert’ - Criselda Kananda on ARVs amid Covid-19

25 May 2020 - 13:10 By Kyle Zeeman
Criselda Kananda has opened up about her health challenges.
Criselda Kananda has opened up about her health challenges.
Image: Instagram/ Criselda Kananda

After 22 years of living healthily with HIV, radio personality Criselda Kananda has started a course of antiretroviral medication (ARVs).

The star told fans this weekend that she was “not 100% well”, and thanked doctors at Netcare Waterfall Hospital for their help with her recent health struggles.

She revealed she had tested negative for Covid-19, but said the HIV in her body was “having a live concert”.

“I’m out of danger SARS-Covid-free (negative) but the HIV in my body is having a live concert. This means I have to start ARVs after 22 years of living healthy with HIV. My immune system now needs help.”

Criselda has never taken ARVs, telling the Sunday Times several years ago that her immune system was strong enough.

"I am HIV-positive and in all the years I have known my status I have never taken ARVs. Those come into play when your CD4 count is lower than 250. In this country, that is the standard that is set."

In her post this week, Criselda said her immune system had been weakened by the health measures she took to avoid getting the coronavirus.

“The constant cleaning of surfaces, sanitising, disinfecting and covered breathing, though very necessary, unfortunately leads to unintended consequences. The immune system becomes lazy, giving strength to any existing bugs in our bodies. After years of fighting, my fighter cells are disarmed.”

She said the next six weeks were going to be hard, but she believed God was on her side.

The star slammed rumours that she had lied about being HIV positive, and said she forgave the gossip mongers.


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