Get your Health question answered in 3 easy steps
A Doctor will be with you shortly
Ask a Doctor Now
198 Doctors are Online

Done HIV DNA RT PCR test 4.5 days after possible exposure. How reliable is the test in the time it was done?

User rating for this question
Very Good
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 3632 Questions
Hi I've been reading contradicting information about the HIV PCR test. I have read that it can detect the virus within 72 hours and is most accurate at 28 days. I had a HIV DNA RT PCR test done 4.5 days after possible exposure because I suffer from anxiety and couldn't wait. My results were HIV 1/0/2 ABS-Index Value <1.00 and HIV 1/0/2 ABS, QUAL Non-Reactive. How reliable is this test within the time I took it? I know I need to follow-up with an antibody test in 4 weeks but can I relax unitl then? I still have 2 weeks left to wait. And I also took a full panel SRD check and everything came back negative. Is there any STD tests that I need to redo because I know all tests have a window period?
Posted Sun, 23 Sep 2012 in HIV and AIDS
Answered by Dr. Raju A.T 47 minutes later

Thanks for your query,

HIV RT PCR detects the virus RNA.Here a minimum copies of the viral RNA (Actual Viruses) are needed for the test to detect the infection with certainty.

The accuracy of the PCR test to detect the infection goes on increasing over time as the viral practicals multiply in number.As stated the test is more accurate at around 28 days. You may have to repeat it again after 20 days.

PCR test is much reliable than an antibody test as the Window period does not affect the PCR test.Window period is a period where the antibodies are still not formed but the viral replication will be unaffected and can be detected by PCR.

Since the test has shown negative and repeat test after a period of 20 days would be much convincing and reliable.

Hope I answered your query.

Please ask , if any doubts.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Google+
Question is related to
Diseases and Conditions

The user accepted the expert's answer

Ask an HIV AIDS Specialist

© Ebix, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
All the information, content and live chat provided on the site is intended to be for informational purposes only, and not a substitute for professional or medical advice. You should always speak with your doctor before you follow anything that you read on this website. Any health question asked on this site will be visible to the people who browse this site. Hence, the user assumes the responsibility not to divulge any personally identifiable information in the question. Use of this site is subject to our Terms & Conditions
Already Rated.
Your rating:

Ask a Doctor