HCV false positive

Question

My friend has received a positive result from his Hepatitis C test. Can a false positive occur if the person also has herpes? Casn a false positive occur if a person is on any drugs at the time of the test, specifically vicodin, soma, cocaine or marijuana? Thanks. STG

Answer

A false positive test for hepatitis C can certainly occur. There is no data on HSV or marijuana causing HCV false positive results.

The main issue is that you only know that an antibody test is "false positive" through furhter testing with a RIBA test which is extremely accurate. If the RIBA is negative, the initial test was "false positive".

Dr.M