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Explanation on Hep B test results
Nov 6, 2005

I recently donated blood to Red Cross. Red cross sent me the following test results:

Hep B Sur Antigen Manufacturer #1 NEGATIVE

Hep B Sur Antigen Manuf #2 -- POSITIVE Antibodies to Hep B Antigen (nati-HBc, IgG and IgM)

Antibodies to Hep C (Anti-HCV, EIA) NEGATIVE

note...all other tests were negative.

I have done tons of research online but have been unable to pinpoint an explanation to these test results. I have been very nervous about these results and have already scheduled an appt with my Dr. Please help..thank you in advance

Response from Dr. McGovern

I think the most important thing you can do is definitely talk to your primary care physician.

The first result is that your surface antigen is negative. That is excellent news and you do not have chronic hepatitis B.

I wonder if you typed the second result incorrectly. I suspect you are trying to say that you have antibodies to core, not antigen...If you have isolated hepatitis B core antibodies, this has been well-described in blood donors. It occurs in about 5 percent of people without any risk for hepatitis B and is consistent with a false positive test.

I would proceed with hepatitis B surface antibody testing. If positive, then you were exposed in the past and cleared the virus; if negative and you have no risks for acquisition, it is probably a false positive test.

Dr. M



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