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Dr. Brian, what would that specific test be for HIV 2?
Aug 29, 2007

This was the question I asked you before:

Dr. Brian, What test should I get? Will a PCR test detect both HIV 1 and HIV 2 virus? I have to get a PCR test, because I was on immunosuppressants for a long period of time for my transplant. Which PCR tests would you recommend? I heard there are different types of PCR tests. What happens if it comes out to be a false positive. Will the ID specialist be able to do other tests and confirm if indeed it was a false positive. Will it detect both HIV 1 and HIV 2 virus. After getting the PCR tests done atleast can I safely put the fear of HIV behind me? Thank You.

Response from Dr. Conway

The PCR tests that are done in the clinic are specific to HIV-1, and are incredibly sensitive and specific. You will be able to rely on the result. False positive tests are rare and show a very low amount of HIV-1. An experienced ID doctor should be able to tell you whether a false positive test is suspected, or whether it is truly a positive result. If HIV-2 is a concern, you need to tell your doctor about this ahead of time, as a specific and different test must be done to detect it.

Response from Dr. Conway

There is a specific test for HIV-2 virus that is available for clinical use. It may only be available in certain academic centers, but all doctors should be able to order it and have the blood sample sent to the academic centre for testing. I invite you to discuss this with your doctor, or have your doctor send you to see a consultant if he or she is not sure how to deal with this issue.

Dr. Conway, I never had any chronic illness. So is my antibody test reliable? Thank You.
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