Social media influencer Gena Tew announced in March that she has been battling AIDS, which is caused by untreated HIV. She has since documented her journey on her Instagram and TikTok, where she has amassed close to a million followers.
Recently, she took to her social media to address questions regarding her fertility since revealing her diagnosis, as well as revealing she is not undetectable and growing healthier by the day.
“So, I haven’t had a period in over a year, and I was actually worried about that myself,” she said in the video before adding that her menstruation returned. “You can’t have a baby if you can’t have a period. So, I got it! I’m not excited, but I’m excited to know that my body is getting so much better.”
A fan commented that she can still have periods without being able to conceive, to which she responded, “Oh I know!! But I’ve been pregnant before twice but it [stopped] due to my illness.”
She also noted that her viral load is now at the point of undetectability.
Dr. Laura Guay, vice president of research at the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, told Newsweek, “A woman living with HIV can give birth to an HIV-free baby. The most important thing that she can do is to work with an HIV health care provider as early as possible (ideally before getting pregnant) to minimize her risk of passing on the infection to her baby.”
Some preventative measures include taking effective anti-HIV medications throughout the pregnancy and following child birth to decrease the amount of virus in her blood, avoid breastfeeding, and also administer anti-HIV medication to the child.
Tew has continued to document her health online, including her muscles atrophying and a surgery to treat blindness in one of her eyes.