Possible HCV and HIV co-infection and antibody testing
Aug 17, 2002
Hey DR. Rodriguez-Torres!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am writing my question to you because you seem to really know your stuff when it comes to Hepatitis and HIV co-infection.
I wanted to know if a person became co-infected all at once by one exposure to infected blood, could the two viruses together hinder antibody production of both viruses. I already had a negative for HIV 6 months after the exposure. What would be the window period for possible co-infection? I will be getting the HCV test soon.
Thanks for your response!
Response from Dr. Rodriguez-Torres
No,if you are infected with both viruses at the same time,you will have the antibodies to be detected as in any other patient.You can take more than a year to show hep,C antibodies,so if you really are concerned about a risky exposure, you should get a HCVRNA by PCR.The most common scenario is that patients get exposed to HCV years before the HIV infection.In cases of IV drug use, infection is extremely effective ,and patients are infected in the first year of IVDU.Coinfection with HIV,accelerates the progression of the disease,and a larger number of patients wiil go on to develop end stage liver disease.
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