If you believe you have been exposed to HIV and want help to judge your risk, would like advice about HIV testing, or have questions about the effectiveness of condoms or risks associated with specific sexual practices, this is the site for you.
Possibility of false negative result after 12 weeks?
Hi, I know that 12 weeks and after since potential exposure is considered to be conclusive but how reliable is this? I'm not questioning the validity of any test after 12 weeks so please don't accuse me of this or of being paranoid. I am quite simply curious to know what the rationale for the 12 weeks cut off point is. Is it scientifically impossible to not have seroconverted within 12 weeks? Is it possible to seroconvert after 12 weeks but so incredibly rare that it is not worth giving thought to the possibility? I just want to know why 12 weeks is conclusive.
Also, what are the chances of a false negative result after seroconversion? Just an innocent question, i am not trying to undermine any advice given on the forum.
Your post on my previous thread did help. I have accepted them as conclusive. I just wanted to know why they are considered conclusive as a pure matter of interest. As you portray yourself as such an expert perhaps you could enlighten me, i would appreciate that very much.
There are exceptions, but the CDC estimates that 97% of HIV-infected individuals will test positive by 3 months. While it would seem then that 3 out of every 100 people will not show a positive result until after the 3 month mark, that is not the case. Those are in extreme circumstances that are unique circumstances for the individual. People with compromised immune systems--whether it be from taking immune system suppressants for diseases like lupus, or having weakened immune systems from chemotherapy, radiation, or anti-rejection drugs--and some individuals with hepatitis may take up to 6 months to develop antibodies. If you do not fall into any of these categories, ask your doctor about testing at 6 months. If you don't fall into these categories, your 3 month result is conclusive.
You can always test again though. Testing is voluntary, and it's your decision.
Thank you, that was extremely helpful. As far as I know i fall into none of those categories myself (i'm pretty sure they did a hep test on me) although I know my 14 week test was conclusive deep down...i just have anxiety issues and have done my whole life which need addressing. I've only just joined this forum and it's incredible how many people seem to suffer from the same anxiety as me...50% of the threads appear to regard individuals who have tested neg at 3 months+ and still can't accept the neg result...this may seem ridiculous to those who know what they are talking about but speaking from my own experience i know that the emotional pain from exposure to conclusive result is so intense and crippling that it can take years for it to go away and for one to fully accept that they are hiv neg. I went for about a year after my 14 week test and then it just came back one day and i got another one done (no news is good news, they didn't call me which means i dont have it) but i've had moments where i've thought ''what if'' they didn't send my blood off for testing (nurse was angry with me lol). I know this is crazy...but checking this forum it appears extremely common. The mind is a strange thing.
Btw, checked your profile...i'm a BSc student of economics also (mostly Macro) in the UK (half way through 2nd year, plan to do a MSc, possibly PhD)
There comes a point when you have to accept your negative result because you have to take responsibility for your own emotional well-being. If you aren't capable of doing that on your own, you have to at least take the responsibility of seeking a clinical counselor.
Copyright 1994-2016 MedHelp International. All rights reserved.
MedHelp is a division of Aptus Health.
This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. Med Help International, Inc. is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.