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What do these test results mean?
Aug 6, 2007

My 18 year old daughter donated blood 3 months ago. Two weeks later she received a letter from the blood bank stating she had tested positive for Hepatitis C. She went to see her doctor to have further tests done and they were also positive. Her doctor then did more tests and though he thinks she does not have hepatitis C, he cannot explain why the test results are not all negative or nonreactive. Her HCV, AB, RIBA was indeterminate, 5-1-1 (P)/C100(P) was nonreactive, C33C was nonreactive, C22P was Reactive, NS5 was nonreactive and HSOD was nonreactive. She does not have any risk factors for hepatitis and does not have any symptoms. Can you explain what these test results mean and why they are not normal? Do you recommend other tests to be done?

Response from Dr. McGovern

I would stop here. The RIBA would be a clear cut positive if she had infection. Her story is a familiar one. She donates blood and hepatitis C testing is done. The test comes back positive because the assay is not perfect and sometimes comes back "falsely positive". If it were a true positive, the RIBA would be positive. The ELISA test that is done at the blood bank is less expensive than a RIBA and works well - most of the time....

She is not at risk and she does not have hepatitis C.



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