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HIV Window Period - UK guidelines
May 26, 2006

Hi I know a great deal has been written on this forum (and elsewhere on the web) about the 'window period' and whether it's 3 or 6 months. But I've just read the latest national UK HIV guidelines (the documents are downloadable at http://www.bashh.org/guidelines.as)

These state that 'in ten years of application of the 'three months rule' by all members of the UK HIV Laboratory Forum no reports of its failure have been received, and thus it is recommended that the three month rule continues to be applied. Patients, however, may be infectious to others during this period prior to seroconversion and should be advised of this.' Another discussion paper on the site also says that the 6 month rule would only apply to the old ELISA tests, those who have taken pep or in rare cases, people have been repeatedly exposed to HIV during the window period - therefore a definitive 3 month rule should apply to everyone else.

Why does the US CDC still say a 6 month confirmatory test is needed and do you agree with these UK guidelines?

thanks and best wises DJ

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

The CDC is a branch of the U.S. Government. Look at who we currently have at the helm. Do I need to say more? No, I thought not.

BRAVO to the UK HIV guidelines folks for their clear and concise statement. I wholeheartedly agree!

Cheers!

Dr. Bob



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