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How accurate is 6 months window period and assurance that the result with out sex after six month exposure is truly NEGATIVE?
May 13, 2014

Hi Doctors,

Good day to all!

I'm really glad i found this site. I am sleepless now at the moment while i'm writing this i got so confused and worried. My friend attended at HIV Seminar today. She learned in the seminar and told me that after SIX MONTHS window period is not an assurance that my HIV Rapid test result is truly NEGATIVE even i did not have any sex act for that period of 6-months.

Here is my background, i'm in a 6-years same sex relationship.He died last December 2013.My partner told me that he was HIV infected before he admitted to the ICU.It was too late the his HIV was already full blown to AIDS.

Our last unprotected sex was May 2013.I experienced and itchy feeling inside my penis last August 2013 and after 2-week medication it was cured by the antibiotics. Last December he died. Since i was EXPOSED in unprotected for 6-years with him i decided to get tested last March 2014 in accredited government hospital. I am top and my partner is bottom.

My test last March 2013 turn out NEGATIVE.It is almost 10-months that i don't have any sexual activity during that 10 months period.I was happy that time with the result.Since then i have no sex-life until this moment.

I was only bothered that my friend told me that after 2-3 years i maybe positive if i get re-tested again.My friend told me that is now the new study of HIV cases as discussed in the seminar. I felt annoyed now and mentally distracted.I'm thinking now that 3-6 months window period is useless reference.Please enlighten me dear doctors.Your reply will be greatly appreciated.Thank you so much and more power.

Response from Ms. Southall

Hi The testing guidelines for HIV are now to be initially tested at 3 weeks post exposure and then again at 90 days. As long as there are no other exposures happened during this time frame than the results are conclusive. With the sensitivity of testing it has changed from 1 year to 6 months and now to 3 months. Having your test results come back negative and if there have been no other types of exposures during this time you can consider yourself HIV free.

Be well and stay safe, Shannon



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