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$100 donation please help! is a 6 month hiv 100% conclusive?

Jul 26, 2008

hello doc! I had an exposure on january 18th this year while overseas in Vietnam i had one time unprotected sex with a csw who was later confirmed positive since my arrival back to the us i had what i have no doubt in my mind to be ars i had a fever,sore throat,sweaty palms,night sweats rash, loss of weight loss of apetite and extreme fatigue my wife who is pregnant had the same exact symptoms a month after our last unprotected sexual contact i continue to have skin problems and mouth sores i did catch that i never had before to this day and am very worried i have been tested at 8,10,11,13,15,21,26 weeks with elisa and oraquick antibody tests they all came back negative for hiv i also had all my hep tests done up to 4 months they were also neg my questions to you are how good is a 6 month hiv test? i know 3 is 97% is 6 100%? also my encounter was in Vietnam i know the subtype over there is E aka A/E a crf do antibody tests detect these or are they just tuned to be able to detect B and the common strains found here in the U.S.? is there anyway a rare strain can slip though and not be detected by these tests? if so what test do i need to take to be for sure? also i read on your site that there is a documented case where a man took 1 year to seroconvert with a hep c coinfection should i be worried? please please help i will donate a $100 i just want to get closure and move on from this experience and get answers and if i am indeed infected be able to get help and meds so it isnt passed on to my child thanks doc hope to hear from ya soon

Response from Dr. Frascino


Your seven negative HIV tests out to 26 weeks are conclusive and definitive. HIV is not your problem. No way. No how. No additional specialized testing is warranted. The "symptoms" you describe could have been caused by a wide variety of non-HIV-related conditions. An FDA-approved negative HIV-antibody test outside the window period trumps "symptoms" each and every time. The hepatitis C coinfection case was a very rare case that involved the patient, a health care worker and developing acute hepatitis C. This is completely unrelated to your case where you've tested negative for hepatitis out to four months. Your fears are completely unwarranted. They may well be magnified by your guilt related to this Vietnamese sex-perience. If you haven't already done so, I suggest you level with your wife. It's not only the best way to confront your guilt; it's also the right thing to do.

Thanks for your tax-deductible donation to the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation ( It's warmly appreciated.

Be well. Stop worrying.

Dr. Bob

Thank you! A response from you made my day!
Follow up to the binge drinking question.

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