Advertisement
The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
   
Ask the Experts About

Choosing Your MedsChoosing Your Meds
          
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
Recent AnswersAsk a Question
  
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary


unclear results
Dec 10, 1999

I'm a 28 year old female who has recently tested positive for hiv (confirmed twice by the Western Blott test)but the time of infection is totally unknown (my sexual partners have tested negative, no blood transfusions or needle use). My viral load is undetectable (less than 20) and my CD4 is within normal range. No opportunistic diseases are present. I'm not starting medication yet. The next test in store is an hiv culture. My doctors seem baffled by my test results as well as my situation. Can you shed any light on this or direct me somehow? I don't know what to do or what to think.

Response from Dr. Pavia

You are in a very tough bind. The number of people who are infected who will have viral loads below 20 is very low, and if you really have been able to find all of your sexual partners (going back all the way) and none of them are positive, I wonder if you are really infected at all.

A few things to do, if not already done. One is to repeat the viral load with a bDNA assay, just in case you have a non subtype B virus, which might not be detected with PCR. Another is to talk with the state Health Dept and have them consider reviewing the western blots, doing the test in their lab, and perhaps checking for HIV2.

As for detecting virus in this situation, a standard culture is likely to be negative. What would be more useful would be a highly sensitive, CD8 depleted culture. This is the test that Bob Silicano and others used to show that the reservoir does not go away.

If all of the above are negative, I would bet you are not infected, but it must still be very hard to live with the uncertainty. Hang in there

ATP



Previous
Will health insurance cover you outside the US
Next
Concerning drug concentrations and resistance

  
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

 Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS


 
Advertisement



Q&A TERMS OF USE

This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither TheBody.com nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint

Advertisement