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Indeterminate DNA-PCR Test (Qual)

Jan 3, 2002

My DNA-PCR test was taken approx. 4 weeks after possible exposure. The result was "Indeterminate". The lab ran the test twice and the same result occured. I have basically concluded that I'm "positive", believing the virus hasn't kicked in yet. Any outside chance some other factor/s contributed to this "Indeterminate" result? Many thanks for your consideration.

Response from Dr. Pavia

You certainly should not conclude yet that you are infected. All PCR methods can give false positive tests, which is why we do not diagnose HIV infection on a single positive HIV PCR. More importantly, you don't even have a positive test. You have an indeterminate test, which simply means no accurate determination can be made. At this point, one might do an antibody test, since it is likely to be positive, and couple it with an RNA PCR which gives a quantitative readout. Only viral loads of greater that 5,000 to 10,000 are reasonable to diagnose accute infection.

Hang in there, and don't jump to conclusions until the testing is done.


Testing at 1 year - necessary?
what Viral load is statistically significant?

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