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Tests in the Middle East!
Jul 17, 2009

Hello Dr. Joseph I wish you are doing fine, I wanted to ask you about HIV tests in the middle east and exactly in Jordan do you have any idea what generation of tests do they use? I guess it's the third generation. When I got my result from the lab it didn't say what type of test was done it's only said HIV 1/2 Negative. but the lab is accredited from the ministry of health. I am a bit worried and I need your help.

Response from Dr. McGowan

I am not sure which test is being used. Sometimes the report will state what assay was used. Is that mentioned?

Most screening tests are very sensitive, which means they detect the true positives very well, and may also pick up some false positives (that is people who are really negative but test positive). The false positives are eliminated because they will test negative on a second test that is much more specific for HIV (called the Western Blot). You must be positive on both to be interpreted as "positive". If there has been recent (within 3-6 months) exposure the test may not have time toi become positive and a repeat should be done later.

Best,

Joe



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