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Viral Culture
Mar 26, 2012

Doctor, 8 weeks after a risk exposure in a different country; I experienced 1 month on and off fever, night sweats on and off 2 months, rashes, hot flashes, lost weight, candida, an dother symptoms. My cd4/cd8 ratio is been inverted for 5 months straight because of a cd8 elevation (1100-1400). Ratios of 0.71- 0.83. Now my baby who is being brestfed is been coughing 1 month, has bronchitis and developed different dermatitis. I tested negative on ELISA, RNA, DNA PCR's; and I wanted to ask: where can I get a Viral culture done?? I see peole who has done it but I dont see where can be done. Thank you

Response from Dr. McGowan

Viral culture can only be done in specialized labs that have safety procedures in place (biosafety level 2, or P2).

Culture is used for research purposes only. In fact the RNA and DNA testing is much more sensitive than viral culture for diagnosing HIV infection, especially in the early stages when virus may be present at very high levels.

Joe



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