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life has become hell-Pls help doc
Sep 19, 2010

Hi doc My wife and i are happily married, but we got the shock of our life, when my wife tested positive for the screening test for hiv, but tested negative for the western blot. This medical test was for a permanent residency application, That country for which we applied for residence,its government sent papers back to my doctor to repeat the test after 3 months from the date last taken, we were both shocked when we heard that elisa screening was reactive but Western blot came negative.

Our doc asked , if we were recently exposed to HIV, and i replied we never got exposed to HIV, which is why we are shocked, my doc argued, HIV does not come from thin air we both were scared when he said that, but i swear we never indulged in any risk which would expose us to HIV, i was tested for HIV screen Elisa which came back negative.

My wife got tested the second time, after 5 days we contacted my doctor, he said he hasnt heard from the testing laboratory yet, he doesnt know why its taking time and he says- who knows!!maybe the elisa test still has some problem, which is why they maybe confirming by doing WB test again !!I dont know. When he said this, we were pretty nervous as to why it took time, doc said call back in a few days, we are just crossing our fingers

Doctor we are scared - if by any chance Elisa test comes reactive again, what do we do, they might be doing a western blot test to confirm the same. I am tense and trying to console my wife, we are both hoping that the next test comes negative. Doctor if the elisa screening comes positive again what would it mean?Her WB test was negative in the first test, i swear we never had any exposure before. Pls advice doc.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

First and foremost your wife is HIV negative. Next, your doctor who scared the bejesus out of you is a total idiot.

A reactive (positive) screening ELISA coupled with a negative Western Blot is considered a negative HIV test! The repeat three-month test, which showed identical results (positive ELISA and negative Western Blot) again is considered a negative HIV test. The Western Blot is the more specific (accurate) test. Your clueless physician should know this very basic fact. Also, on the remote chance that your wife had contracted HIV shortly before the initial test and was in the process of seroconverting to HIV positive, she certainly would have been convulsively HIV positive (positive ELISA and positive confirmatory Western Blot) by the time of the second test three months later. Again your dimwitted physician should have know this as well.

There are many reasons for a false-positive screening ELISA test, including nonspecific cross-reacting antibodies that can develop as a result of pregnancy (or past pregnancies) as well as many other conditions. You can read about these in the archives. You might want to print out some of the information for Dr. Nitwit -- or better yet fire him and establish care with a more competent and compassionate physician! It might also be fun to do so in a very loud voice in the middle of his office waiting room.

He was right about one thing: "HIV does not come from thin air," and since your wife had no HIV-risk exposure, there was absolutely no way she could be HIV positive!

If your permanent residency application has been help up by the incompetent medical opinion of your soon-to-be former physician, a qualitative HIV DNA PCR test could be ordered. This test does not rely on antibody production, but rather searches for a piece of the virus's genetic material. Your wife's result will undoubtedly be undetectable.

So to sum up: your wife is negative and her doctor is an idiot!

Be well. Stay well.

Dr. Bob



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