If I was your patient?
Aug 16, 2007
Hopefully this will bethe last time I ever ask this question, but if I was to walk in to your office and said, "Dr. Rob, I had a potential exposure 15 months ago, and tested non reactive at 12 months and 15 months with an EIA and Elisa test. Is the antibody test accurate enough to pick up the infection by now? Should I do a PCR test? I read that antibody tests are not reliable from a book published in 2005 regarding "Diseases", what should I do?" The truth is I go on this website everyday for about 3 hours just reading your response to others and I wake up everyday replaying the line that I read about it's unreliability and keep wanting to test. Can I truly move on with my life? Am I HIV negative? Thanks Doc.
Response from Dr. Frascino
If you came into my office with that story, I'd have you WOO-HOOing like a banshee in heat after your very first sentence: "Dr. Rob, I had a potential exposure 15 months ago, and tested nonreactive at 12 months and 15 months with EIA and ELISA test." The rest of the story doesn't matter. That statement is sufficient for a Dr. Bob-certified WOO-HOO!
But to answer your remaining concerns:
1. Yes, the EIA/ELISA is indeed sensitive enough.
2. PCR is not warranted or recommended for routine HIV screening, no matter what you read in "Diseases."
3. Can you truly move on with your life? Well, you certainly should. However "can" you? Only you can answer that question!
4. Are you HIV negative? Absofrickinlutely!
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