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Does undectable virus in blood mean no antibodies?
Dec 18, 2003

I've always been undetectable on viral load tests. Does having an undectable level of HIV in the blood mean that antibodies will take longer than normal to be created? In other words, is antibody creation a function of the level of the virus in the blood?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

No, HIV antibodies are an immunological reaction against the virus. HIV viral load is a method of quantifying the amount of virus in the blood. Even with "undetectable" viral loads in the blood, an HIV-positive person still has virus in many sites throughout the body (including non-detectable amounts in the blood).

So, to directly answer your question, no, antibody creation is not a function of the level of virus in the blood. HIV antibody production is merely an immunologic consequence of being infected with the virus. Hope that helps.

Dr. Bob



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