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Broken Condom and RNA PCR

Dec 27, 2011

About 16 days ago I had a single encounter with a partner who is hiv positive. he is on medication and his viral load is undetectable. his condom broke, we realized after a minute or so and stopped - no ejaculation - and he doesnt ever have precum (according to him).

exactly 7 days in I experienced a sudden onset of diarrhea (lasted 24-36 hours), maybe the slightest low-grade fever (although I dont think it was ever over 99), my skin felt pretty flush (24 hours), and I was very exhausted (72 hours). All I have now is a minor sore throat (the front of my neck really) - but I'm feeling much better otherwise. On day 11 I went to my primary to get an RNA PCR - he did that, an antibody, and a bunch of other std panels to be careful. All the tests just came back negative - the RNA PCR showed <48. My question is - is the timing for my PCR test right / too soon? should I be reassured at the outcome, or should I have waited another week or two to take it? Obviously I will still be following up with my antibody tests at 4 and 6 weeks. thanks for any help.

Response from Mr. Cordova

Hi there:

The window period for your PCR DNA test was fine. Given the situation you described, it's likely that transmission did not occur. I would feel confident with the results of the PCR DNA test. You should go in for a final antibody test at the 90 day mark.

In health,


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