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Request for explanation on discordant couples?
Jul 24, 2003

What brings about discordant status where a couple sexually active may have one negative and the other positive? Is the negative partner truly negative?

Response from Dr. Remien

Transmission of HIV is dependent on numerous factors (e.g., the strain of virus, the general health of both people, the sex behaviors that take place, genetic factors, etc. etc.). Transmission of HIV does not occur every time there is exposure to the virus. It is possible that someone can be infected with HIV for awhile before they develop antibodies and test HIV+ on an antibody test. However, in general, after a few months of having been exposed to the virus, if the test is negative, that person can consider his or herself to be HIV-.


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