False negative statistics - wrong????
Nov 15, 2007
Hi Dr Bob, here's something that is bugging me personally and I can't get it out of my head. You and alot of other HIV experts say that "it's very rare to get a false negative outside the window period, and it only occurs rarely in late stage AIDS, and when taking high dose immunosuppressants". Alot of the time I see you tell people that HIV is not their problem and they have pyschosomatic symptoms. But how can you be so sure? If something really is causing a false neagtive in an individual, and that person is simply dismissed as being a "worried well", they will probably never go and get tested again and hence nobody will ever discover they really DO have HIV. After all, after a neg test, no confirmatory tests are performed, so how do you know it's not a false negative?
Thanks, this is really worrying me.
Response from Dr. Frascino
Please note: HIV/AIDS is not a new disease. We've been intensively studying and tracking it for over a quarter of a century. HIV-antibody tests have been available and in widespread use since the mid-80s! Appropriate long-term follow-up studies have been conducted to validate the test and our recommendations. If we were wrong those "worried wells" wouldn't still be well decades later!
Your fears are unwarranted. I would imagine you too are both worried and well, qualifying you as yet another "worried well"!
Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS
This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.
Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither TheBody.com nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.