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Hepatitis and HIV CoinfectionHepatitis and HIV Coinfection
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Is this True?
Mar 17, 2008

Dear Doctor, You have often suggested to test out to 6 months at least from last exposure to confirm HIV and HCV status. I read that people usually test positive if indeed infected by 3 months. Is your recommendations purely to cover all other possibility of late detection? How about the possibility of detection after 6 months? Do they actually happen? And if they do, why?

Response from Dr. McGovern

I am just reiterating what multiple guidelines state.

You are absolutely correct to state that HCV (and HIV) are usually identified by 12 weeks after infection. However, just like with every bell-shaped curve, there are outliers that take longer. That is why there is a recommendation for testing further out.

I see a lot of patients with acute HCV. My experience is that the HCV antibody comes up quickly and is positive in the vast majority of patients by 12 weeks or sooner.

hep c
No Side Effects from Peg-IFN/Ribavirin

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