Exposure to Test Timing
Jun 27, 2005
Do you know how long after possible exposure to Hep C that a test could reliably be performed? My daughter was possibly exposed 2 weeks, 3 days before having blood drawn for a test. The test came back negative. Do I need to worry any more?
Response from Dr. McGovern
If there is an exposure that you need to be concerned about, I would discuss testing further with your pediatrician. The answer to your question will depend on several things:
The first test may have been a HCV RNA test. That test is very sensitive for virus and virus can usually be detected within a few weeks after exposure.
Hepatitis C antibodies can take up to 3 months to develop and are usually positive within that time frame in about 90 percent of people.
Please discuss testing further with your pediatrician to see what test has been performed so far and what, if anything, needs to be done next.
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