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PEP impact on accuracy of HIV tests

Jun 23, 2012

After a significant exposure, and being placed on post-exposure prophylactic medication within 50 hours of exposure, is there any indication of how long one must wait to have accuracy in tests (RNA or standard antibody test)? Is there any data on how accurate either the antibody test or RNA test is at 25 days after exposure while on PEP, or on how long one must wait for a test that would be fairly conclusive on an HIV negative result?

Response from Dr. Wohl

IF PEP does not work, the virus is detectable in the blood. So, the HIV RNA tests are accurate even during PEP. Typically, testing would continue after PEP to be completely certain and most centers test at end of PEP (4 weeks after exposure) and then again at 8-12 weeks post-exposure.

If these tests are negative, so are you.


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