Seroconversion and acute retroviral syndrome
May 4, 1998
Are seroconversion and ARS the same thing? I've seen alot of
messages regarding "seroconversion illness" and "symptoms
associated with seroconversion" and they sound alot like
ARS. Also, does serconversion happen all at once or
gradually over a period of time until a threshold is reached
resulting in a positive HIV ab test. Thanks.
Response from Dr. Cohen
Seroconversion is the process of developing antibodies (and other immune system changes) to HIV virus infection. the Acute retroviral syndrome is those symptoms that occur to the approximately 50% or so of people who are recently exposed to HIV. So yes they are essentially describing two aspects of the same thing. And yes there are stages of seroconversion - with a change in the antibody pattern - that is especially clear in the test called a western blot - on which early seroconversion will initially be read as "indeterminate" while later it will have more antibodies present and be read as "positive".
Hope that helps.
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