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non specficin binding to the nitrocellulose strip
Sep 20, 2008

Dr Frascino, I feel like I am in a nightmare and cant wakeup. My 2nd test came back the same as the first non specific binding to the nitrocellulose strip. The test was HIV 1/2 and something with a reflux. What is the chances of this being neg overall poss.. Please respond.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

Well, it probably wasn't "reflux," but "reflex." It's a term used to indicate that if an initial test is repeatedly reactive (positive), the lab will automatically proceed with a confirmatory test. For screening HIV-antibody tests (ELISA, EIA, rapid tests, etc.), the confirmatory test would be a Western Blot or IFA (immunofluorescence assay). The reflex confirmatory test was probably not run in your case, as your initial screening test was not positive. There are many causes for "non-specific binding" or indeterminate test results, the most common being nonspecific cross-reacting antibodies. (You can read more about this in the archives.) The vast, vast, vast majority of these cases turn out to be HIV negative. If the physician or clinic where you are getting your tests does not know how to properly evaluate this type of "non-specific binding" result, I'd suggest you see an HIV specialist. He will be able to quickly and accurately ascertain your HIV status by ordering more sophisticated tests. The thing to remember about nightmares is that they are just bad dreams once you finally wake up and smell the Starbucks, OK?

Good luck. I'm here if you need me.

Dr. Bob



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