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HIV at home test validity 1&1/2 years after exposure
Aug 11, 2012

Dear Dictor, I just recently had a possible HIV exposure a little over a year and a half ago. I found that one of my friends had slept with my boyfriend at the and was discovered to be HIV positive. Now, finding this out a year and a half later, I panicked, decided not to wait for the 5-7 day wait period and got an at home test kit. It was the FDA approved one sold through Walgreens pharmaceutical department which required a blood sample to be expedited in on the paper provided. Much to my relief it came back negative, but the relief was short lasted because I am wondering at the true validity of the test being that it has been over a year since a possible infection. May I trust the good news that I dodged this bullet? I have always been so very careful and never in my life thought I would be in a situation like this and I am terrified that the news is almost too good to be true. Should i have further testing done? Thank you so for your time, it is greatly appreciated

Response from Dr. Young

While we don't usually answer "Do I have HIV?" questions on this forum, the recent FDA approval of at-home HIV testing makes your question noteworthy.

A negative HIV screening test more than 6 months after the last possible exposure (and certainly 18 months) is definitive.

Be aware that if one is sexually active, medical guidelines would still recommend annual HIV testing as part of your routine healthcare (just like getting your cholesterol checked or annual Pap smear).

Be well, BY



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