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I'm so confused..please help
Mar 27, 2010

On feb 17th a baby girl was born. On march 16th the mom was called and notified of positive testing for hiv in herself and the baby. On march 19th the father tested negative. is it possible that the father's test is correct-or is it just wrong??? i really want his test to be negative--beause he is my little brother--but i also don't want him going off of mis-information..i mean if he goes back in 3 mos and it is still neg..and again in 3 more mos is it possible that he doesn't have it??? and how could that be so when he's had unprotected sex with her multiple times..enough to have two baby's one yea apart...the oldest boy turned one on feb 11th, and he is negative...help- i'm in need of some correct information so that i can help these young people in this life-altering situation...thanks for ur time and patience. be blessed*

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

Yes, it is possible your little brother is HIV negative, despite fathering an HIV-positive infant. Not every HIV exposure leads to HIV transmission! The archives are full of stories of magnetic couples (one poz, one neg) having numerous episodes of unprotected sex before even realizing that one of them was positively charged and yet the negative partner remains negative.

There are several possibilities that will need to be sorted out regarding your brother:

1. Your brother's wife (or partner) contracted HIV and transmitted it to her infant during pregnancy, delivery or breastfeeding. Despite her being HIV infected and your brother having unprotected sex with her, HIV was not transmitted to your brother.

2. There was a laboratory, technical or clerical error and the tests are incorrect.

3. The results are false positives. Did the infant merely test HIV-antibody positive? If so, this could reflect maternal antibodies that crossed the placenta. Generally infants need to be tested out to 18 months to determine if they are actually infected or not.

4. Your brother's test was a false negative and he is really HIV infected (doubtful).

5. The mother's test is a false positive due to nonspecific cross-reacting antibodies resulting from her pregnancy.

The next step is for the mom to consult an HIV physician specialist. That doctor will be able to run the appropriate tests to determine exactly what's going on and will advise next steps as indicated. If the mom is indeed HIV positive and your brother is HIV-antibody negative now, he will need follow up HIV-antibody tests out to six months from the date of last exposure (unprotected sex).

Good luck to all involved. Write back once this has been sorted out and I'll post your follow-up for our forum readers.

Dr. Bob



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