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HIV Window - Really Stressing over this!!
Nov 15, 2004

Dr. Sullivan -

I would greatly appreciate your insight on this!

Most information, of course, says a 3 month HIV test is what's definitive. However, in the archives, I found where you said that usually HIV antibodies can be detected after only about 2-4 weeks.

Is this still accurate information? I ask because I had an encounter of concern nearly six weeks ago... very low risk to my understanding, brief unprotected oral (I received for a few minutes, and gave to him for really only a few seconds and he did not ejaculate). I got a preliminary HIV test (rapid test at anonymous clinic) done at 27 days, or one day before four weeks. It was negative.

I will do follow up testing at the 3-month mark just to be sure, but how reliable was my first test? Is it a pretty good indication (especially combined with my low risk in the first place) that I do not have HIV? Or, as some have suggested, is it meaningless? My 3-month mark isn't until January, and I just want to be able to relax over the holidays with my family, knowing that I'm very likely okay.

Thanks in advance for your response.

Response from Dr. Sullivan

The majority of individuals will have antibodies to HIV by 27 days post infection; your negative test and low risk exposure indicate you are not infected[>99% certainty]; followup test at 12 weeks will confirm and give you 100% accuracy; JLS.


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