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My Blood Donation to the Red Cross was rejected.
Jul 21, 2001

I recently donated blood to the Red Cross. They rejected my blood. My HIV 1/2 EIA was Pos. The Western Blot test was Indeterminate. All other test were negative including the NAT test. The definition given on the Red Cross fact sheet said with these results I am MOST Likely NOT infected with HIV. I am curious. Would a blood transfusion of 7 units of blood in 1981 effect these tests? Would Epstien-Barr effect these tests? Would a common cold effect these test. I remember not feeling well the day I donated and I also started my period the same day. I am checking with my physican for further testing. She is not too concerned at this point. What is your oppinion?

Response from Dr. Aberg

You need to have a repeat HIV test. You can have a false positive EIA (Elisa antibody test). The fact that your Western Blot was indeterminate means that it did not identify the number of HIV proteins one normally has in HIV infection. This test needs to be repeated. You could have early HIV and should get a repeat EIA with Western Blot and a HIV RNA viral load test. Other acute viral infections such as acute EBV can give a false positive EIA but having your menses has no bearing on the EIA test. The more common causes of an indeterminate Western Blot include early HIV, HIV-2 infection, autoimmune diseas and recent tetanus toxoid (vaccination)

A blood transfusion from 1981 should not give you a false positive test. People who have recievd intravenous gamma globulins may have false positive EIA's up to 3 months after the infusion.

Also, ask you doctor about the HTLV-1 test which is a different virus. I have had people see me telling me the Red Cross informed them they had "HIV" but in fact, it was the HTLV-1 test. The Red Cross had the correct onformation, but the person(s) misunderstood what was said or written. Have your physician review the labs from the Red Cross.

I would not brush this off so easily. You need to have repeated tests for HIV and I would recommend that you get a repeat at 6, 12 and 24 weeks until we know for sure whether you have a false positive test or early HIV.


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