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Result of HIV testing after treatment with ARVs
Sep 11, 2009

When a person on ARV treatment goes for viral load testing, and it shows undetectable, does it mean that the HIV antibody test will now be negative as well (ELISA or similar)? And if treatment fails and the viral load increases, if one is tested in the final terminal stage of AIDS - will the antibody test still be positive, even if the person's CD4 count is 0?

Response from Dr. Henry

The HIV antibody test remains positive on treatment even after the blood HIV level has gone to undetectable. Virologic failure does not equate to terminal clinical state but poses new challenges to re-achieve viral control and stable or improving immune status. The antibody test usually remains positive no matter what the CD4 count is. KH



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