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Can time of infection be estimated?
Nov 4, 1996

Is it possible to estimate with some degree of accuracy, the time that one has been infected with hiv? I have teste positive recently but I do not have any idea of when I got the virus. I have heard about a "special analysis" that can provide an estimation of the time of infection, based on a certain number of proteins in the blood. Is this correct?

Response from Dr. Cohen

I have not heard of any blood test that can tell you when you were infected. Trying to estimate the time of infection based on your CD4 count would be close to impossible, since people progress at very different rates and start from different baseline CD4 counts. The only way to know when you were infected is either to have had only one possible exposure, or to have had a negative HIV test and then later seroconverted.



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