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HIV test before 12 weeks window period

Jun 30, 2013

Dr Wohl, Good day. I had a relationship with a colleague that I discovered to be HIV positive. I had intercourse without protection on few occasions: the first time was on marsh 29, 2013 and on may 21 was our last sexual encounter. I had my pep started late with tribuss ( atripla), on the 24 may (more Than 72 h) when I then discovered that she was positive. My combo and viral load test done pep on day 28 and day day 32 post exposure came back negative. Again a combo done today, 7 days post pep, 39 days post exposure are all negative. I am aware of the need to be tested at 12 weeks and ideally even on 6 months post exposure; but the persistent and new fine rash, tonsillitis and some 2 newly discovered lymphadenopathy are quite worry some and taking my sleep away. In view of my story, where do you think I stand? I think there is a school of thought considering that if pep is initiated late or fails, the viral load or any pcr for this mater should be diagnostic beyond 2 or 3 weeks post exposure.

Response from Dr. Wohl

If PEP fails, by definition, the virus will start to replicate and be detected by the combo test (p24 antigen) and viral load (HIV RNA PCR). If you were really infected and this was the cause of your symptoms, then certainly virus would be circulating. I bet you are not infected.


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