Posted by: Anon | 2012-03-12

HIV testing

Hi Dr

I''m not a very sexually active person, I''ve never had an STD nor have I been sick (actually I''m very healthy, I don''t even get the common cold). I''ve never been at risk eg broken condom, unprotected sex etc.

In 2010 I went for an HIV test (I had been sexually in active for about 3 months at the time) and the test came out negative. Test was a finger prick.

Last year, I went to donate blood and apparently my blood was reactive.

I went to a doctor who did a lab test and I was diagnosed HIV+ (was never at risk between the time of the 2010 test and this, in fact was inactive).

I was in disbelief and dr suggested we do CD4 count when the results came the dr estimated I''ve been positive for about 4yrs and told me I need to start ARV treatment ASAP as my CD4 was very low. I refused because none of this made sense, mind you at no point was I ever sick and I still haven''t been sick.

Then I went to another dr and those results came out negative. The second dr told me to stop worrying and there''s no chance its a false negative taking into account I''ve been inactive for close to 2yrs and I don''t live a risky lifestyle.

My question is, how reliable are these tests really? Who should I believe? And why do the different tests produce different results? If I''ve been really infected for 4yrs is it possible to get a false negative TWICE?

Thanks Doc

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberDoc

This is very unusual. The cheaper finger prick tests can give false positive results. I do not know why your CD4 count was deemed very low. You can ask a pathologist to do a HIV PCR blood test. This is very accurate.


Dr Anrich

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Our users say:
Posted by: Nelli | 2012-03-13

Wow, that would be sheer torture for me. I admire you for keeping it all together. I really have doubts about these tests now.

Have you considered testing again? You say you took a lab test which was positive, as well as a reactive test when donating blood and your cd4 count is low. I would seriously consider testing again.

Many people live with HIV for years without knowing it or even becoming sick. You may just be one of these people. And it takes just one unprotected sexual encounter to infect you.

You are responsible and it would be awful if you are +ve because you are doing everything right.

Please test again.

Reply to Nelli

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