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HIV Prevention Message Board

HIV Prevention Board Index

Hi there,

some time ago, I had vaginal sex with a man I briefly knew. We used condoms, or so I thought. Turns out, he had removed the condom during sex and I did not find out until after he had left.

About 1-2 weeks later, I developed a nasty cold, including two types of rash, fever, pains, loss of weight, diarrhea, seborrhoic excema, just to name a few. It was ugly.

That's when I got tense and tested for HIV.
5.5 weeks - PCR for HIV-1 - negative.
6.5 weeks - ELISA 4th generation - negative.
8 weeks - ELISA 4th generation - negative.

By the standards of the leading Institute of my home country, a negative test is deemed conclusive after 6 weeks post-exposure. So, no worries, right?

The thing is, I read an interview with a doctor who specializes in HIV. He said that most women test false-negative at first, because their initial viral load is often very low, that seroconversion starts very late and thus, cannot be detected at first. He said that was the reason why many women were late-presenters - they tested too early, got a negative result and then, years later, they showed up with full AIDS.

To make a long story short - have you ever heard of that thesis? Can I rely on the tests I have taken (the PCR would have detected the virus, right?)? Or should I test again after 12 weeks? What are the odds that an 8-weeks-negative test is false-negative?

Thank you for your answers (and sorry if my post sounds weird, English is not my native language).

Best regards

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