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Antibody positive but virus undetected

Hello,

I am a 24 year old woman, have never used any illegal or intravenous drugs, 0-1 alcoholic beverages/week if that. I have had one sexual partner in my life who is HCV negative. While having a routine physical in March 2008 I requested to be tested for all STI's. Prior to that, I had never been tested for STI's. All tests came back negative, but I was informed that I tested positive for HCV antidbodies. In that same visit (March 13) the nurse practitioner ordered a "confirmatory test" to see if I had an active virus. On March 17, she called me to infrom me that my test came back "negative". To be on the safe side, I set up an appointment to see an Immunologist. Had further labs done, and antibodies still showed up. On April 11 had viral load and genotype testing. On April 22- received "undetectable" results and thus no genotype or viral load. Have I spontaneously cleared  the virus? I assume that the virus would be present before antibodies.

Thank you in advance.

4 Responses
517294 tn?1212078006
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Nothing to add really except if the RIBA was positive, then you were exposed to HCV and cleared it. If the RIBA is negative then you have a false positive antibody test. Neither one is anything to worry about, however the blood bank people will not want you to donate blood. I always do repeat the PCR test in 6 months or a year. Stay well! DTD
217229 tn?1192762404
flaCW -

There are a small percentage of folks who go through acute phase and somehow their immune system is able to spontaneously clear the Hepatitis C virus.

Those people remain UND for virus.

So technically you are "cured" but have the Antibodies from the virus.

I didn't know that they had to have virus to test genotype --- that's interesting --- there's a lot I don't know about the virus... But it kind of makes total sense - because if there is not a virus cell present in your blood then they cannot tell what type it is --- -because it isn't there.

I'm assuming you're one of those that cured automatically.

In that case - I'd probably take a PCR test every couple of years to keep checking on it --- but probably not more than every 3 or 4 years.

Much luck to you...

Dr. D is probably having a grand fourth of July!!!!

Meki
Avatar universal
If I read your post correctly, you had a reactive screening test, a neg

confirmatory test (Riba) and a neg Pcr test, which checks for the virus.

Is that correct?  If so, then your screening test was a false pos and you

do not have antibody or virus for hep c.

217229 tn?1192762404
"Had further labs done, and antibodies still showed up. On April 11 had viral load and genotype testing. On April 22- received "undetectable" results and thus no genotype or viral load. Have I spontaneously cleared  the virus? I assume that the virus would be present before antibodies. "


Jakied - only problem with this scenario is that there are multiple tests showing antibodies - but no VL --- so subject is UND --- which means spontaneous clearance or VL so entirely low that it is undetectable...

Methinks more on the lines of Spontaneous clearance.

But Dr. D will have to positively answer the question.

I just think he's probably enjoying the holiday --- heck I KNOW I would be if I worked as hard as he does.

Meki

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