home kit hiv test????

Question

hi doctor Bob, earlier today i was going to buy a home testing kit for hiv Fda approved. but i was so skeptical because you mentiones hiv does not survive long once outside the body... the test consists of dripping blood over a sheet of paper and then sending the sample via mail to a laboratory where the results are said to com back in a few days... i am totally confused because if indeed hiv cant live otside the body specially if it is airborne, then all results would come out negative... no? thanks steve

Answer

Hello Steve,

No reason to be confused or concerned. The FDA-approved Home Access Express tests are not testing for live HIV virus! Rather, like many HIV screening tests, they detect anti-HIV antibodies, which are blood proteins the body's immune system makes in response to HIV infection. Your HIV test results will be accurate.

You can learn more about HIV tests by reviewing the information easily accessed on The Body's homepage under "Quick Links." There is a whole chapter there on "HIV Testing Basics." You can also read more about home test kits in the archives of this forum.

Dr. Bob