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is western blot test accurate in window period??
Mar 23, 2013

Hi doctor... I'm not english user, so I wonder if you can read my question. Sorry my poor english, but I have question. I had sexual realation with sexual commercial girl.( I am male and I had condom protected) After 27 days, I had ELISA test and get positive. (cut off value is 0.25 and my result is 0.43) The hospital sent this blood to upper institute, and the institute had western blot. The result is negative(I know the 'negative' means no band at all or no band except p17) I was very happy at this result. but after, I heard in window period, ELISA test is more sensitive then Westernblot. so I was worried that WB test result is false negative. so I had another ELISA test in same hospital(it's 6weeks after sex) and the value was 0.55 (0.12 higher than 4week test) hmmm... I'm very scared. Can I believe Western blot test? If I have hiv, is it possible only value '0.12' increase between 2weeks? (I wonder if it is normal fluctuation or my antibody become specifier at hiv virus)

sorry again, I'm english novice. Thank you for your concern!

Response from Dr. Wohl

What you raise is a question about the timing of these two tests becoming fully positive. During the weeks after HIV infection the ELISA will become positive before the Western blot. However, the Western blot would not be completely negative and would likely show the presence of some bands.

In your case, it sounds like the ELISA was positive and the Western blot completely negative. This suggests a false positive ELISA. You do not say but if at 6 weeks the Western blot was still negative, then you surely have a false positive ELISA and are not HIV infected.

DW



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