Jun 26, 2013
I had unprotected vaginal sex exactly 6 week ago with whom I suspect hiv positive girl. I test for hiv and found out that I am hiv negative. But the medical doctor told me that the exact result will show up after 12 weeks. Can I be sure of the negative result I have now? Thank you
Response from Dr. Hightow-Weidman
Hello there- Please see my standard response below about the accuracy of testing for HIV following an exposure. Take care, LHW
Current antibody tests can pick up HIV infection earlier than prior tests and by 90 days practically all (97%) infections are detected by antibody testing alone the remainder turn positive by 180 days. Therefore, a negative HIV antibody test after 90 days means that infection was highly unlikely and a test that is negative at 180 days or beyond is considered conclusive for the absence of HIV infection. Even newer HIV tests look for the virus itself. These include assays such as HIV RNA tests (viral load) and p24 antigen tests. These become detectable within days of infection. So, an undetectable HIV RNA or p24 antigen test accompanied by a negative HIV antibody test at 90 days or beyond can also be considered conclusive for the absence of HIV infection.
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