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One honest question....
Sep 10, 2007

Hey Doc, i'm not going to lie to you (like so many others)to try and get you to answer this by saying that i'm going to donate. I simply don't have the money to spare. Hopefully you'll still consider answering my question having said that because I REALLY need an answer.

I have reason to believe that i've been coinfected to hepatitis c and hiv. NOW I HAVE READ THE ARCHIVES AND KNOW THAT YOU SAID IT CAN SOMETIME TAKE A YEAR TO PRODUCE ANTIBODIES IN THIS particular CIRCUMSTANCE. I don't want to wait a year to get tested. What are my options.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

Thanks for your honesty. It is true that many folks will promise a donation to try to encourage me to select their question for posting. This is unfortunate for several reasons. First and foremost, donations to any charity should only be offered in the spirit of generosity and compassion, not as a bribe for services rendered. Second, whether someone donates (or offers to donate) doesn't affect which questions get selected for posting. Your question is a perfect example! My services here are free and available to all, whether or not they wish to make a donation to The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation. My efforts here are completely separate from my work with the foundation. Third, a number of folks have promised donations, had their questions answered and then felt terribly guilty about not donating or not being able to donate. Several have felt their deception lead to bad karma and wrote in asking for forgiveness! Just what a worried well needs, something else to worry and be anxious about!

OK, on to your question. I'm not sure I ever said it can take up to a year to produce antibodies in folks with HIV/hepatitis C coinfection. You may have misunderstood the context of my comments. This is really not a diagnostic dilemma! There are tests other than antibody assays to help diagnose hepatitis C and, when necessary, even HIV. For hepatitis C, if someone is experiencing symptoms consistent with that diagnosis, such as nausea, vomiting, fatigue, jaundice, decreased appetite, etc., the evaluating physician could test liver function studies plus HCV RNA. The bottom line is that your doctor or clinic will know how to evaluate someone for possible coinfection, OK?

Dr. Bob



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