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ELISA + Western Blot - on 4 different occasions
Aug 21, 2008

I am a female who has had approximately 4 HIV tests on 4 different occasions over the past 7 years. Each time the ELISA was positive and the Western Blot was negative. I know this means that technically I am HIV negative but what causes a consistently positive result on the ELISA test?

Response from Dr. Horwath

The ELISA test is extremely sensitive to detecting various antibodies; that is why it is used for screening. It has a very low rate of false negative results. However, it is not very specific. This means that it will sometimes be reactive (positive) to other antibodies in the blood that are unrelated to HIV.

If the Western blot is negative, then you can be very confident that you do not have HIV.



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