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hiv2 in mexico ???
Jul 28, 2002

Dear Dr. Kull,

I had a high risk exposure in Tijuana, Mexico. Do I need to be tested for HIV 2 ?

The orasure test covers only HIV 1....is this correct ?

Please throw some light on this.

Thanks.

Response from Mr. Kull

The Orasure test, an antibody test that uses oral fluid as opposed to blood, currently tests for HIV-1 antibodies.

HIV-2 is endemic in west African countries. The prevalance of HIV-2 in other areas of the world are too small to merit routine screening for HIV-2.

HIV-1 antibody tests will detect antibodies to HIV-2 about 70% of the time. If there is a risk for exposure to HIV-2 (sexual or needle-sharing contact with persons at risk from west African countries), HIV-2 antibody tests should be used. Testing sites in the United States are increasingly using HIV-1/2 testing.

Significant rates of HIV-2 have been identified in the urban areas of Senegal, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Gambia, and Cape Verde. HIV-2 antibody testing would be recommended for anyone having exposures in these regions.

RMK



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