Do white tongue and low lymphocyte levels indicate an HIV infection?

Q. Is my tongue white and lymphocyte levels low because of an HIV infection?

Answered by
Dr. Basti Bharatesh Devendra
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 20, 2022 and last reviewed on: Aug 08, 2023

Hi doctor,

I had unprotected vaginal sex two years ago. A few months after that incident, I underwent a few tests that I have mentioned below, I underwent an HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) rapid test, and the results were negative. I did an HIV CMIA (Chemiluminescent Microparticle Immuno Assay) test twice at one-month intervals after three months of the first test, and the results were negative. Also, I underwent HIV-1 and 2 p24 combo, which was negative. A few days later, I did an STD (Sexually Transmitted Disease) and the herpes simplex virus 1 and 2 test. The IgG was high, and other levels were normal. Six months after the last HSV test, I underwent a western blot test, and the report was negative. Within a few months, I did a fourth-generation HIV test, and the report was also negative. I repeated the HIV-1 and 2 p24 combo test at the beginning of each year for two years, and the results were negative. I recently underwent another HIV-1 and 2 p24 combo test last month, and the result was negative. However, now I am getting a white tongue, and my lymphocytes are low at 19.30 %. What should I do? Kindly give your suggestions.


Hi, Welcome to

Thank you for contacting us on The HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) antibody tests are repeatedly negative after three months of exposure, so do not worry about HIV. They are conclusive, provided there is no further risk of exposure. So, there is no need for further HIV tests. Though the lymphocyte values are slightly low, it does not matter. However, I suggest you to follow a few instructions mentioned below, Maintain good oral hygiene. Use oral mouthwash or do a warm salt water gargle. A white tongue is usually due to poor oral hygiene and is unlikely to be related to HIV. I hope this has helped you.

Hi doctor,

Thank you for your reply.

I am unmarried. As I am free from HIV, will this affect my marriage?

Please advice.



Welcome back to

You are free from HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), provided there is no further risk of exposure. So, you need not worry about HIV and can go ahead with your marriage. You can discuss with your partner about herpes infection. And it is not a serious disease like HIV.

I hope this has cleared your doubt.

Take care.

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