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Hcv PCR RNA positive after 2 HCV RNA negative

Please help me I can not belive my results, I did HCV antibody test that was positive after that I had 2 PCR RNA test result negative, I repeat again because I was worried for stds, on third time PCR RNA positive, I got result on phone today, I do not know how is possible, how I can have two PCR negative but antibody positive, then third PCR RNA turn positive, even gum clinic says I do not need to repeat test after PCR RNA negative, is it possible I have antibody with out deduction of virus, and virus show up latter?
14 Responses
Avatar universal
Plz some one help me, any one there plz?
Avatar universal
I have no idea what that means but, there are some very knowledgeable folks on this site that will pick this up and help you. Maybe it has to do with antibodies to the virus. There are people who can clear the virus before it becomes chronic and they would have developed antibodies...Mary
Avatar universal
Thx for reply, month ago when I tested HCV antibody was positive and 2 PCR RNA test were negative, gum clinic says I clear the virus, no need to worry PCR RNA test did not deduct any virus, and I neednot to repeat the test too, but a week ago I was testing for stds, do I did HCV PCR RNA test again and it come positive,
1. Is it possible antibody can deductable but virus in PCR RNA negative and after a month turn positive?
2. Is PCR RNA test can be false positive or false negative too?
3. Do I need to repeat the test again?
4. What should I do now?
Avatar universal
Plz any one help me, y no one reply to me, plz plz plz
Avatar universal
I would get another PCR just to make sure

"How soon after exposure to HCV can anti-HCV be detected?
HCV infection can be detected by anti-HCV screening tests (enzyme immunoassay) 4–10 weeks after infection. Anti-HCV can be detected in >97% of persons by 6 months after exposure.

How soon after exposure to HCV can HCV RNA be detected by PCR?
HCV RNA appears in blood and can be detected as early as 2–3 weeks after infection.

Under what circumstances is a false-positive anti-HCV test result likely?
False-positive anti-HCV tests appear more often when persons at low risk for HCV infection (e.g., blood donors) are tested. Therefore, it is important to confirm a positive anti-HCV test with a supplemental test, such as RIBA (recombinant immunoblot assay), as most false positive anti-HCV tests are reported as negative on supplemental testing. More information is available from the Guidelines for Laboratory Testing and Result Reporting of Antibody to Hepatitis C Virus.

Under what circumstances might a false-negative anti-HCV test result occur?
Persons with early HCV infection might not yet have developed antibody levels high enough that the test can measure. In addition, some persons might lack the (immune) response necessary for the test to work well. In these persons, further testing such as PCR for HCV RNA may be considered."
Avatar universal
You should have HCV antibodies even after a successful treatment, that is totally normal. It measures immune response to HCV and not the virus itself. However if you actually have HCV RNA this indicates a relapse since it (naturally) means you have viral genetic material in your blood which shouldn´t be there if you have had successful treatment.

It´s unlikely that it is a false positive but it´s not impossible and considering that you have had treatment lately i would certainly recommend that you contact your ordinary HCV-clinic that have done the two negative tests and ask them for advice and proper testing. Your case is for sure something for a specialist, since you have had treatment lately.

You got these results by phone, perhaps from someone not fully competent in interpreting the test results. Are you really sure that you were PCR RNA positive and not just antibody positive? Could they have mixed it up when giving you the results since it´s usually just an antibody test that is done in screening for STD? What was the viral load in the PCR?

Here the recommendation for being declared free from HCV post treatment that you do 2 tests where one is 6 MONTHS after treatment. 2 tests just after treatment shouldn´t be enough, how far apart were they?
Avatar universal
Thx for reply, I had no treatment, I tested 6 week ago for HCV antibody test that was positive after that they did PCR RNA test that was negative, I repeat another PCR RNA test 4 weeks ago that's was negative, and now my third PCR RNA test last week they call me today and told me to come on Friday and said my PCR RNA test is positive, nurse do not know much she said I need to discuss with doctor on Friday, I do not know what should I do?
Avatar universal
Plz any more advise?
Is PCR RNA HCV test can be false negative or false positive after 5 month of risk?
1747881 tn?1546179478
"I repeat again because I was worried for stds"
Hcv is not considered an std and is not easily transmitted in this way.

"Is PCR RNA HCV test can be false negative or false positive after 5 month of risk?"

After having 2 negative PCR's without any other exposure risks, I would ask for a retest.

"nurse do not know much she said I need to discuss with doctor on Friday, I do not know what should I do?"

See the doc as recommended.

Avatar universal
Thx for your help, I want to update my thread, I saw my Dr. On gum clinic, and she told me my PCR RNA test is negative, I asked y nurse called me and told me that is positive, Dr. Said she do not know much she might talk about antibody test result, but we called you to explain your results, Dr said my PCR RNA is negative and I am clear and no need any reissurance, thx for you to advice to see doctor, and help me to come out from stress, God help you all, God bless you all, thx.
1840891 tn?1431551393
Congratulations, I'm so glad your story has a happy ending. I hope the nurse who called you with incorrect results is made very much aware of his/her horrible mistake and is prevented from ever inflicting such needless anxiety on anyone else. Now enjoy your good health and do whatever it takes to keep it that way! Best wishes!
Avatar universal
Well thats a relief!

So it was as i suspected in my first post, a misinterpretation by the one giving you the test result. Its a pretty serious fault actually since it has caused you serious distress.

I´m sorry for supposing that you were treated for HCV, it doesn´t say in your original post what the circumstances behind the repeated testing were and the time frame for testing is about the same as when you finished treatment.

But if you have positive antibodies and no viral DNA (PCR negative) this should imply that you have spontaneously cleared your infection. Congratulations!
Avatar universal
I am about to have hip surgery and the surgeon ran a series of tests including HCV antibody Hep C viral AB. It came out very positive  stating it was high. So I went to my primary care who had tested me a year and a half ago because my husband has active Hep C and I tested negative for anti body's and quantitative in 2012. Now April 2014 I test positive for the antibody so he runs another test antibody and quantitatively and they are all negative. How can that be that I have the antibodies and 2 weeks later I don't? I am at high risk living with my husband who has Hep C so a false positive usually happens to people at low risk? The only discrepancy I see in the 2 labs is the positive one was collected and reported the next day and the subsequent negative ones were collected and reported 5 days later. Any pearls of wisdom? I don't feel confident at all with such varying results in the span of 2 weeks and being at high risk.
317787 tn?1473362051
Hi there, welcome! Please go to the "post a question icon" you will get responses.  I would be confused as well.  Did the surgeon test your viral load?  There are two tests, one shows antibodies, if you react then they check for a viral load.  If no viral load you do not have it.  All this means is that you had it at some point but your body was able to clear the virus.
It almost sounds as if the surgeon did not do the second test but your primary care did both tests and you don't have it.  It would be nice if he could explain it to you but I know how doctors are.
Take Care
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