Laboratory tests, including CD4 counts, p24 antigen, raised levels of B2 microglobulin, neopterin and CMV antibodies, have been established as important predictive markers of disease progression in patients with HIV infection. As HIV antibody testing becomes more accepted in medical practice, counselling about these laboratory predictors of progression can help patients and doctors plan together the patients’ care and treatment. Addressing patients’ main concerns at each stage of investigation and illness may help them to plan ahead of crises, reduce stress, and enhance communication between patients and health care providers. © 1991, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. All rights reserved.