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Now that's a tough question
Jan 21, 2010

Dear Dr., That is the response that I have gotten to this question. I hope you can help and be more definitive. My question is this. What is the accuracy of testing after being treated with chemotherapy for testicular cancer. My risk exposure was about three years ago and as I said, I finished my final chemo treatment about 2-3 months ago. I just tested negative which is a huge relief but when I ask anybody about the accuracy of the test considering my chemo treatment and my weakened immune system, the response has been inconsistent from all the people who do the testing. I realize you get mega amounts of emails but I have exhausted every resource available to get the answer this question. I understand the concept of the window period for seroconversion but could really use your help with this tough question. Thank you so much in advance.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

It's really not that tough of a question. It's just that in order to answer it I would need more information (type of cancer, type of chemo, dosage, date of last chemo, etc.). If there were any concern about inability to produce specific antibodies, you could get a qualitative HIV DNA PCR. This test is not recommended for routine screening, but it can be helpful in cases where the serological results are unclear.

Hope that helps!

Dr. Bob



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