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borderline reaction

Aug 27, 2007

what does borderline reaction mean in an HIV test result

Response from Dr. Horwath

This term is sometimes used by people to describe the situation of having a positve ELISA test followed by an "indeterminate" Western blot. The Western blot is a serologic test that shows antibody reactions to various antigens associated with HIV. A strongly positive Western blot occurs when there are reactions against several different HIV antigens. Sometimes a Western blot shows an incomplete reaction to 1 or 2 antigens and is considered indeterminate. This can happen for a variety of reasons, like being tested shortly after HIV exposure. Usually, these types of test results can be clarified by retesting at a later date or using an alternative test or correlating the results with other information, like history and symptoms.

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