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Avatar universal

Duo test availability in US?

Throughout both this forum and the doctors forum, there are myriad references to the combo test.  These seem to be mostly from EU readers.

I understand the mechanistics of these tests.  At least one and possibly several have been approved by the FDA for use in the US.  However, neither quest nor labcorps (nor any of the third parties that sell access to these tests direct to informed consumer) seem to offer it.

So what gives? If the strategy of simultaneously testing for viral antigen and host antibody production has been validated, why isn't the combo test part of the US HiV testing mantra like it seems to be in the UK?

And as a follow up does anyone know the labcorp/quest codes for piecing together a similar test assay?
7 Responses
Avatar universal
The USA has not embraced the HIV DUO test like other countries have so it's not avaliable in all states.It is the test of choise in AUS--the UK--and Europe.It's 99.89% reliable at just 4 weeks.
Avatar universal
There is no real advange in the DUO and the cost of the test is 3 times the cost of a standard antibody test.
Avatar universal
The advantage is the tests ability to identify new infections at an earlier time frame than an antibody test.Yes it is more expensive but it's worth knowing your status as early as possible so as not to infect others and if necessary start treatment.
Avatar universal
DUO test will NOT detect HIV2 infection any earlier than a standard antibody test. DUO test will only detect early infection 8 days sooner than a standard antibody test. No real advantage.
Avatar universal
@Teak, @Rainlover -

Thanks for the insight.

From an epidemiological standpoint, 8 days earlier detection is significant for a communicable disease with life altering consequences -- especially considering virulence during high titer stages.  To break the cycle of infectivity, it's absolutely critical to decrease the window period as much as possible.  And surely costs would drop with wider adoption of the testing protocol?

Granted, the added expense may not be worth it for most people testing with statistically extremely low risk exposure; still, it should be an option.  FDA out of my uterus.
Avatar universal
That is totally incorrect. Use condoms and you won't have a concern. Medically it is not of any benefit.
480448 tn?1426952138
Actually, most newly infected peple aren't started on meds right away  anyway, so it's not like a matter of a few weeks or a month is going to have negative consequences on one's health.

Like Teak said, it's a very expensive test, and most providers will still recommend testing at 3 months anyway, so it's an unnecessary added expense.

Some may say it will decrease anxiety levels but as we see daily here, even people who have tested negative multiple times before the 3 month timeline still cannot accept their results, so overall, I don't see that it is worth the money.  It's an added expense that many people really cannot afford, and if it is covered by insurance, it is just feeding into the already outrageous costs of healthcare.
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