The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App 
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
Ask the Experts About

Safe Sex and HIV PreventionSafe Sex and HIV Prevention
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
Recent AnswersAsk a Question
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

HIV 2 in United States-

Apr 2, 2002

I need some help-please I have had to go to a crisis center for contemplating suicide due to my stress. Approximately 4 years ago my girlfriend and I separated for a year. Within that year I had 3 other female partners. One was Dominican American female (early fall of 1997) -1 episode of unprotected sex, African American female (March 1998)- started to have sex but put condom on 3 minutes into it and finally a Phillipina American (May 1998)- we were both tested and were negative. When I was with my third partner the phillipina it was 6 weeks after my last partner and I took an Orasure test and I had a positive Elisa and a negative western Blot. The counselor didnt accurately explain what this meant and told me I may have just been infected. I called my last partner and she sent me her hiv result which were HIV negative a month prior to me being with her.

I realized soon after that I had been infected with genital herpes- had some outbreaks and my partner at the time became very sick- flu like symptoms, headache, nausea for a week or two. I freaked out because I thought I was hiv infected and infected my last partner.

4 years later and much anxiety and fear later I decided to finally take a blood test. The Elisa didn't react. I was finally able to go to a doctor and have a cbc done- came back in normal parameters but now I read about HIV 2. I have never had direct contact with a Western African but I dont know the risk of my past partners. I am tired! truly tired- I am now seeking mental counseling for this issue. I have had protected sex with my now wife and we want to have a baby. I am terrified to do so if I could potentially have HIV 2. a few questions:

1) Why do false positives occur? 2) Would my HIV 1 test have detected HIV 2 after 4 years? 3) Would my CBC have shown any signs of HIV infection after 4 years? 4) If I had HIV 2 which is undetectable on an HIV 1 antibody test would this also hold true for the people I may have infected or the person who infected me- would they also be testing negative on HIV 1? 5) Is it safe for my wife and I to have a baby- I dont want to infecdt her if I have HIV 2? 6) What are the current statistics for HIV 2 in the US?

I was very happy to be negative at first but now it is difficult for me to accept because I know of HIV 2. If you could please provide some insight I would greatly appreciate it- I am so tired of the stress- I am presently taking antidepressants Paxil. Thank You

Response from Mr. Kull

1) It is not clear why some people have false positives on the ELISA. Certain characteristics in a person's blood sample could yield a false positive result even though the person may not be HIV infected.

2) HIV-1 antibody tests can detect HIV-2 infection about 70% of the time. If you are at risk for HIV-2 infection (exposures to those infected with HIV-2 or to those who had exposures in HIV-2 endemic regions, like western Africa), you should have an HIV-2 antibody test. Many labs test for both HIV-1 and 2 in the U.S.

3) CBC results are not a reliable way to determine infection. Your negative antibody test at four years is a sure sign that you are not infected.

4) Can't predict. It is unlikely that you are infected with HIV-2.

5) I do not know latest national statistics, but as of May, 2000, there were 124 confirmed cases in New York State. That is a small percentage of HIV infections in the state and probably represents a higher rate than many other U.S. states.


Passing virus before confirmation
Short and not Sweet

  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

 Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS



This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint