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Hep B positive?
Jun 17, 2007

I recently completed the VX-950 trial for hep c. I did get the new drug and was on standard treatment for 6 months along with the VX-950 for the first 12 weeks. I cleared the virus in less rhan 8 days, and am still clear at 6 months later. A month ago I went to my primary and told her I had no immunity to the hep b virus after my boosters that showed up in the trial screenings. Last month she ran a hep panel and it showed I was positive for the hep b virus. HEP B CORE IGM-negative. HEP BS AG-positive. How is this possible, I was negative for the B virus all the way from detection to pre-screening, a nine month period. I had no sex for the last year and a half to present. I'm confused. Could it be a false positive?

Response from Dr. McGovern

Yes it could be a false positive. I would be highly suspicious of this result since you were just recently negative several times so if you just got infected, you hepatitis B core IgM would probably be positive.

All HBsAg tests are supposed to have confirmatory testing to be certain that the test is truly positive. I myself had a patient with a similar circumstance of no risk who was told she had a positive HBsAg test; however, there was no confirmatory testing and it turned out to be a false positive test.

I would have your physician talk to the laboratory supervisor and further explore whether the appropriate confirmatory testing were done; if so, was the test a borderline positive? If that is the case, repeat testing, with a full hepatitis B panel, may help. Hepatitis B serologies are not straightforward, by any means, and I wouldn't lose sleep over this.



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