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Regarding window period

May 7, 2015

I am a former heroin user who has left my bad habits behind and joined the military. I was screened for HIV upon entering the Army about 2 months after my last intravenous use, this was negative. I took a blood test again at 4 months which was also negative. Finally I gave myself an Oraquick rapid home test at roughly 5 months which was a negative. Can I assume the window period has passed and the negatives were conclusive? I am a healthy young male with a seemingly normal immune system. I am looking for a confirmation that my past mistakes will not come back to haunt me in this new phase of my life. Thank you for your time.

Response from Dr. Fawcett

Thanks for writing and congratulations on your recovery from heroin. That is a big achievement. The great majority of seroconversions take place within 90 days of exposure. A small percentage can occur between 3 and 6 months. I would recommend taking another test at the six month mark and then fully enjoy your recovery and your service in the army.

Best wishes,

David



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