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testing period for HIV-positive infant
Jul 14, 2002

We are trying to adopt a baby from India. Her mother was HIV-positive. The baby tested positive for HIV for several months from birth on. After one year, the baby tested negative. How long must the child have negative tests to know with certainty she isn't infected with HIV?

Response from Dr. Jackson

Uninfected infants born to HIV infected mothers may test positive for HIV antibody for up to 18 months of age because the maternal antibody crosses the placenta and can remain in the baby's blood for many months.Therefore if a baby tests negative for HIV antibody by 15-18 months of age and did not breastfeed, the baby is considered to be uninfected. Also if the baby tests negative on two separate specimens for HIV RNA or HIV DNA 8 weeks or more after birth and did not breastfeed, the baby is considered to be uninfected. The gold standard however for identifying an uninfected baby, is for the baby to test negative for HIV antibody at 15-18 months of age.

BJ


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