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Trusting a HIV test

Recently when being on holiday I did something stupid, had unprotected sex in a high risk area. I feel really stupid. I went to the doctor shortly after to ask about it. This is an international clinic recommended by foreign departments in Europe and USA, so it should be a good clinic. It also felt like they were serious and professional. The doctor told me I should get my partner there for a test. I got her to the doctor, we both did tests that ended up negative. I know I haven't done anything risky in a long time before this, so it's no reason to doubt my results. Getting the results I felt really happy. That meant I didn't have to start post-exposure prophylaxis. However, reading more about the subject on the internet I understand this test, which was a blood test, blood taken from the arm (I don't know more exact the method, but it was a rapid test, about 15 minutes), I understand that the girl in a worst case scenario could have been infected the weeks or even months before we met, without it leading to her testing positive. However, I felt I could trust the clinic, as it is supposed to be of a western standard, and they must have had their reason for trusting this test. If there were any doubt I would have liked to start the treatment, even if it was for no reason. I don't know much about the girl's lifestyle, it's always hard to tell, but before going there she felt certain she was not sick. So my question is how accurate the blood test is, and how long time before we met she must have been infected for it to show positive?
19 Responses
Avatar universal
All positive tests have to be confrimed no matter where you live.
Avatar universal
What does this mean? My concern is that she might have been infected the weeks before my encounter with her. I know the chances are small for this, but you never know. The doctor didn't ask if I wanted to start the treatment, so I expected the results to be trustworthy. I don't doubt the test itself, it's the time aspect I think about.
Avatar universal
nPEP?
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Sorry, don't understand. I know little about test methods etc.
Avatar universal
Googled it. Post-exposure prophylaxis is what they called it there. If she tested positive I would have started it.
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To obtain a conclusive negative test. You need to test 3 months after your last unprotected sex.
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Ok, that's what I have been reading around the internet. However, how accurate is a blood test normally when thinking about time from exposure? I feel a little bit worried about the time. When I was testing I thought they could see an infection right away, since they didn't mention the thing about time.
Avatar universal
It's not, that is called a baseline test.
Avatar universal
But why do you think they only did the baseline test, and didn't offer me to start the treatment anyway?
Let's say she was infected three weeks before we met, what are the chances it would show positive on the test?
Thanks for you answers by the way.
Avatar universal
You need to forget about her status and worry about your own--just test at the correct time.
Avatar universal
Ok, I will test after 3 months. The reason why I worry about her is that I know for sure I was not infected before meeting her. I have lived very safe for a long, long time. I just wonder about how the doctor might have been thinking. If I knew more when testing I might have asked to start the treatment, even if it was for no reason and I would have some side effects. Maybe I send en email to the doctor I used to ask.
Avatar universal
WHY wait 3 months when you can have a DUO test at 4 weeks and it will be 99.89% reliable.
Avatar universal
Because a DUO test doesn't check for HIV 2 by antigen and isn't appoved to give a conclusive test earlier than 3 months.
Avatar universal
Ok, I go to the doctor here and ask what they think.
I'm just curious about why the doctor felt I could trust the results. Maybe it will ease my mind a little if I email them to ask.
Avatar universal
It's a designed early detection test,theres no point taking it after 4 weeks.
Avatar universal
The baseline test I took? Is a blood sample more accurate than other forms of testing?
Avatar universal
Baseline test just makes sure were weren't infected previously.
Avatar universal
Ok, so reason to be a little concerned. But it is most likely not a problem. So the routine at this clinic is to trust this test. I should have asked them more about it when I was there.
Avatar universal
Previously means everything from 2 weeks to half a year/more?
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