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Final Word on the DNA PCR
Feb 18, 2008

Doc, With a person who has a severe autoimmune disease (lupus) and has all the symptoms of HIV after a high risk contact, but HIV Antibody test is negative after 4 months 2 weeks, doctor suggested qualitiative DNA test (which I read to be the DNA PCR) - would it be a good indicator of status when the antibody test may not be?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

I would agree with the use of a qualitative DNA PCR in your situation, even though the test is not FDA approved for routine HIV screening. I find it quite helpful in cases of disputed or indeterminate serologic tests and also when antibody testing may be unreliable, as in your case of severe systemic lupus erythematosus.

Good luck! Remember, to avoid having a similar conundrum in the future avoid further high-risk exposures by always using a latex condom for penetrative sex!

Dr. Bob



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