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21 Week Jitters
Mar 6, 2004

Dr. Bob,

I dig the work you do here. Thanks.

I put my self at risk 24 weeks ago. In the last 5 months I have tested several times. I have had 15 tests, I think - maybe a record. I had rapid tests done at 79, 82, 87, 93, 97, 102, 108, 113, 121, 137, 147 and 158 days. I had blood drawn for ELISA's at 137 and 147 days. I had those tested for both HIV 1 and 2. I also had a PCR test done at day 147. All tests have been negative.

I am a 31 year old male, and for the most part pretty healthy. My question is: if I had contracted HIV from that exposure 24 weeks ago, the PCR test taken at week 21 would have shown it, right? Can I woooooohoooo? Thanks.

Still Scared

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Let me get this straight. You are wondering if 15 negative HIV tests, including rapid tests, ELISA's for HIV-1 and HIV-2, and a PCR at day 147, are conclusive enough for you to WOO-HOO??? A single test at three months would have been sufficient and definitive, in my opinion. That means you've had 14 unnecessary tests at a cost I can't even imagine. If you really "dig the work" I do, please consider what effect the money you spent on totally unnecessary and unwarranted testing could have had if it had been spent combating the HIV/AIDS pandemic. It costs only 80 cents to save a child's life by providing an HIV-positive pregnant woman with a medication to help reduce the chance she will pass the infection on to her unborn infant. I'll let you do the math. You are HIV-negative. I'll let you decide whether or not to WOO-HOO.

Dr. Bob



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