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HIV INCONCLUSIVE
Apr 17, 2010

Hi Dr. Bob, my Doctor has contacted me as my husband call to say that it was really irresponsible from her not to call me, since the results. She told me that the first result came positive and then they perform and second test with the same blood and it came back inconclusive, I am crying my eyes out to sleep, as I am only 29 and with a healthy life style and a beautiful 19th month old baby too look after. I honestly hope for this second test that has been sent for further testing comes back negative as I always wanted to become a mom and feel like the unluckiest woman alive, not being able to see my son become an adult. If this comes negative I am definitively putting a case against the doctor and the lab. Please reply to this, so far you are the only one giving hope.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

You asked for a reply, but you didn't really ask a question! I don't have much to add to my response to your initial question. (See below.) As you've had essentially no HIV risk, there is really no cause for alarm. You most likely had a false-positive HIV screening test followed by an indeterminate result run on the same blood sample. Indeterminate and/or false-positive HIV screening tests are not uncommon and can result from a number of causes. You can read about these in the archives of this forum. In your case both H1N1 vaccination and/or recent pregnancy could produce nonspecific cross-reacting antibodies that resulted in an indeterminate or false-positive HIV-antibody screening test. More specific follow-up HIV testing will be able to quickly clear up the confusion.

As for "putting a case against" your doctor and the lab, I believe the biggest and perhaps only mistake was your doctor's lack of communication with you regarding the test results and what they mean, or, more accurately, don't mean.

Try to calm down and stop crying. I remain confident all will turn out well (including you). Write back with your final test results and we'll celebrate together with a WOO-HOO duet, OK?

Good luck.

Dr. Bob

HIV Result inconclusive Apr 16, 2010

Hi Doctor, hope you can help me, I am going crazy, On March 17th I took an HIV test which came inconclusive, my Doctor contacted me last week as I am applying for permanent residency and need to be healthy to be approved, I had the H1N1 vaccination on March 9th and wonder if this can affect the results, I am a healthy person with a 18th month old baby, I had a blood test before for other matter two months ago and nothing wrong was found with my blood, this was before I got vaccinated. My doctor advise me to go for another one which I took on April 12 and this one came back as well inconclusive. I can never talk to my Doctor is always the receptionist which is driving me crazy as I don't feel I got her support. I was told the results have been sent for further testing but don't know what they mean as I can never talk to the doctor since I had my medical done. I am married and I have been with my husband for the last 6 1/2 years so I don't have multiple partners, this is driving me crazy, I had a test last year and it came back negative and don't know what else can be wrong, just the thought of not seen my little baby become and adult kills me the stress is bad I can't rest, would it be the H1N1 causing all this? Thanks for your help.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

An inconclusive (indeterminate) HIV test doesn't mean anything is wrong. Since you have essentially no risk for HIV, you shouldn't be concerned about being HIV infected. There are a number of conditions that can cause HIV screening tests to be indeterminate (or even falsely positive!). It is possible that either your recent H1N1 vaccination or your recent pregnancy produced nonspecific cross-reacting antibodies that confounded your HIV-antibody test result. More specific confirmatory testing should be able to quickly sort out this confusion. As for your doctor not talking to you, what's up with that? I suggest you fire your doctor (and tell her why you are leaving her practice) and find a more competent and communicative physician.

As for your HIV status, I'm confident the follow-up tests will confirm your negative status.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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