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So many tests? Is what I took Woo-hoo-able?

Nov 12, 2003

Hello Doctor Bob,

I have tried many times to email you and I figured out why you haven't responded...that's because you probably think I'm a dumbass for telling you my story of unprotected oral and protected vaginal and the basically non-risk involved in that. After telling you I tested negative at 9 weeks and also at 13 weeks past exposure, you probably feel I'm just going crazy. I know I do.

In any case, not to waste your time longer, I guess I can rephrase my question and ask you:

I was looking at Quest Diagnostics where I took the 2 tests the doctor placed. I am wondering if that test is definitive after 3 months as you claim. People are always saying, "to get tested." Well what is THAT exact test and is the one I took sufficient?

According to my paperwork, I took: HIV-1 AB SCREEN W/REFL - (6449)

They were both negative after 9 and 13 weeks. Can I Woo-hoo or should I take another exam? Why so many exams even for HIV-1?

This is so confusing. I feel like I still have symptoms after 6 months that include slightly swollen submandibular glands (no pain), excess phlegm, tingling and on/off groin pain (although no swollen glands). Are these symptoms of ARS?

Below is a list of the tests Quest offers: IV 1 HIV 2 AB, EIA, POSITIVES REFLEXED TO HIV-1 WB - (37694) HIV 1 HIV 2 AB, EIA, WITH REFLEXES - (10260) HIV 1 RNA QN PCR ULTRA V1.5 - (34220) HIV 1 RNA QN PCR V1.5 - (34205) HIV 1 RNA QUALITATIVE PCR - (37815) HIV 1 RNA, QN PCR, UPPER EXPANDED RANGE V1.5 - (39453) HIV 1 RNA, QUANT PCR WITH REFLEX TO HIV 1 VIRTUALPHENOTYPE - (10435) HIV 1 RNA, QUANTITATIVE PCR, EXPANDED RANGE - (14484) HIV 1 VIRTUALPHENOTYPE (TM) FOR DRUG RESISTANCE TO PRI AND RTI - (10469) HIV-1 AB CONFIRMATION BY WESTERN BLOT - (5233) HIV-1 AB SCREEN W/REFL - (6449) HIV-1 ANTIGEN (P24), QUALITATIVE - (36439) HIV-1 DIRECT AG (ICD), ELISA - (36444) HIV-1 DNA, QUALITATIVE PCR - (8401) HIV-1 GENOTYPE - (34949) HIV-1 GENOTYPE WITH GRAPHICAL REPORT - (11189) HIV-1 GP41 ENVELOPE GENOTYPE - (11367) HIV-1 RNA QN BDNA (V3.0) - (29273) HIV-1 RNA QUANTITATIVE PCR, 1ST GENERATION,W/REFLEX TO GENOTYPE - (34471) HIV-1 WESTERN BLOT W/REFLEX TO HIV-2 REFLEX - (37708) HIV-2 ANTIBODY, EIA, WITH POSITIVES REFLEXED TO WESTERN BLOT - (37363) HIV-2 ANTIBODY, WESTERN BLOT - (34313) HIV-2 PROVIRAL DNA, QUALITATIVE, PCR - (34977)

Please help me on this and I will not bother you again.

Bless you for all the good you do.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

I would never call you a dumbass! I have no idea of your ass's I.Q. For all I know, yours could just as well be a smartass. I've been called that before.

OK, what you had was an antibody ("AB") test for HIV-1. The "W/REFL" most likely refers to automatically performing a Western Blot confirmatory test on any antibody test that turns up positive. This is routine testing procedure.

So is a negative HIV-1 AB SCREEN W/ REFL at nine and 13 weeks following a "basically non-risk" exposure (unprotected oral and protected vaginal) considered WOO-HOO-ABLE? (You just turned WOO-HOO into an adjective very clever . . . ) Yes, it's very definitely WOO-HOO-ABLE and YABBA-DABBA-DOABLE, too!

Are your symptoms ARS? No, absolutely not! Don't be a dumbass! (oops). We just decided you were HIV-negative, remember?

Stay well.

Dr. Bob



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