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How accurate is HIV ab1/2 blood test at 87 days from possible exposure? Have negative results

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How accurate is HIV ab1/2 blood test at 87 days from possible exposure and an HIV RNA Quantitive HIV PCR Quant,Log 10 Viral Load test for HIV at 94 days since possible risk? Results came back Negative & non reactive at that time. Is that accurate and enough time to detect? 36 days after possible exposure I woke up in the middle of the night in severe abdominal pain and I was dry-heaving. Pain lasted over 24 hrs. A few days later the pain came back and this time i was vomiting & Diarrhea. I thought it may have been food poisoning but then 2 weeks later the abdominal pain came back a 3rd time, so severe i went to the ER. CT scan showed i had a little inflammation in the small bowel. A GI Doctor noticed 2 weeks later that my platelets were low at 53,000. They have gone as low as 45,000 to 64,000 currently over the past 9 months now. After further test, i now came back positive XXXXXXX 1:1280. Is there any connection between HIV and Positive ANA? 5 months later I started getting pain in the bottoms of both feet (In the Arch) that has been there for almost 4 months now. My stomach just feels off and has a lingering feeling that something is not right there. An occasional pain but not as severe as the first 3 episodes.I've gone for Colonoscopy in early 2011 that is unrelated and was only done then cause my father had a small amount of colon cancer early detected) The rest of my blood work looks good and i've been going just about once a month or so for more blood. Since i vomited the 2nd episode and then tested for HIV about 2 months after that, does that mean the virus would've been detected since i was sick if present?My life turned upside down and i'm lost and scared.Is those HIV results accurate enough to take it off the list? Please Help
Posted Mon, 10 Sep 2012 in X-ray, Lab tests and Scans
Answered by Dr. Bimal Desai 4 hours later
Thanks for query.

Antibodies against HIV 1 & HIV 2 are usually not detectable until 6-12 weeks of exposure & almost always detectable by 12 months.

PCR RNA test look directly for the genetic material of HIV. There is no accuracy after 21 days of exposure but this test will able to detect it at 15 days & its accuracy is 99.6% after 12 weeks or 84 days of exposure.

Log 10 viral load test is more interpretive when patient is on treatment.

The positive XXXXXXX test 1:1280 has very less say somewhat relation with HIV infection but usually it is more indicative for auto immune disease.

If we go in to symptoms you have abdominal pain & the investigation reveals it as small bowel inflammation.


The first & foremost symptom of HIV infection is repeated infection. That is missing in your case.

This infection lowers your immune system cause your body to catch infection easily so you have repeated infection that is absent in your case.

Your test result also confirms negative result.

So, nothing to worry about accuracy of test. It is always accurate but more accurate is symptoms.

None of your symptoms mention above related to infection.

Forget about your HIV infection & return to your 20''s.

If you have any query you should feel free to contact me.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: How accurate is HIV ab1/2 blood test at 87 days from possible exposure? Have negative results 8 hours later
Here's my full story of events that have happened since Nov. 2011. Sorry for being so long or if i repeated questions below but i have been searching for answers.Here's my full story at length. Sorry it's so long..I'm a 44 yr. old white male from Chicago,Il. I have been athletic and healthy my whole life until Nov. 20,2011 when something went wrong! A bit of background, I do not smoke or take any drugs ever.I'm a weekend drinker,i sometimes go heavy with beer and shots,sometimes too much (maybe once a week). I'm not taking any medications and i'm the type of person that would barely take an aspirin, hardly ever. Here's my story: On Saturday Nov. 20,2011 i went out to dinner with my wife. I returned home and a few hours later i woke up about 1 am with SEVERE abdominal pain and dry heaving.The pain lasted 24+hrs and by monday i thought it might be going away.The next day on tues., I was taking my family to the Bahamas for Thanksgiving and on the night before(on that WED) i had a 2nd episode.This time along with the severe abdominal pain that woke me up again around 2am, I was experiencing violent vomiting and diarrhea for hours.I did not notice any blood.Just kept going thru out most the night. The pain lasted 24+ hrs. again & once again i thought maybe it's finally going away. Just over 2 weeks later on Mon. Dec.12,2011 i woke up around 2 am again with the 3rd episode.This time was like the first with SEVERE pain in my abdomen and dry heaving but NO vomit or diarrhea. The pain always felt maybe a little to the left of my belly button and sharp.I went to the ER that morning and they tested blood,urine and a CT scan.There appeared to be some inflammation in the small bowel. The next day I went to see My Family Dr on tues Dec. 13th 2011 & he gave me Cipro,Metronidazole,Hydrocodone to treat it. After i took the meds for the first time that late afternoon around 4ish i later had black stool, i didn't notice any foul odor. Took the antibiotics again that night around 11pm. went to the bathroom again later that night and still black and slightly orange urine.On Dec. 21st,2011, I went up to see a GI Dr. for an exam. He noticed from my ER test results that my platelet count was real low at 53,000.My abdominal pain was very mild by this point and i haven't had anymore more severe attacks since the ER visit.Just a lingering feeling of being off. Now we were on the search of why my platelets were low. More test and the platelets went down from 53,000 to 50,000.I went to see a Hematologist on Dec. 27th 2011.At this point i have been off the meds since Christmas Eve and haven't taken anything since.On XXXXXXX 9th,2012 I went to see My Family Dr. again,this time about my heart cause i was waking up with a racing heart.Only happened in my sleep and would stop racing a minute after waking up.
Took an EKG test and didn't see anything abnormal but did send me to wear a Holter for 24 hrs. to monitor heart activity.Everything with my heart checked out okay. XXXXXXX 11th,2012 wed. The Hematologist called to say the blood looks good but the platelets dropped again for the 3rd test in a row,down to 45,0000 from 50,0000 and the HIV ab1/2 blood test was negative. I looked at a past history of my platelets from 3 yrs. ago and they were in normal range at 189,000. XXXXXXX 16th 2012 , I went in for a bone-marrow biopsy which checked out okay. Then more blood work for Hepatitis Test and a Viral Load quantitative RNA test for HIV. Results came back non reactive on all but the platelets remained at 45,000. XXXXXXX 20th 2012 fri. My joints have been sore for sometime and my neck is a little stiff. It also became difficult to walk at times XXXXXXX 30th tues. I went to GI Dr for an Upper GI. (I had seen him in XXXXXXX 2011 for an unrelated colonoscopy due to my father having a small amount of colon cancer).Everything looked fine with me then. My results were negative and my scope was as well.Feb 15th 2012 my Platelets went up for the first time from 45,000 to 54,000. March 15th 2012 thurs. Platelets up again from 54,000 to 60,000. April 13th 2012 results down from 60,000 to 57,000. Sun April 22nd my hands and feet are starting cause pain on the bottoms of both feet (in the arches).This is still continuing today and has been about 4 months now.May 15th 2012 tues. I went to see my Family Dr. about the mild pain in my hands but a lot more painful in my feet & He ordered more blood work. I tested Positive XXXXXXX 1:1280, Low Vitamin D (22.3), and platelets slight drop again from 57,000 to 55,000. I went to the Rheumatologist for more blood and urine test. In addition to all the symptoms above, i then noticed what appeared to be little red bumps on my tongue and the right side of my jaw was starting to ache a bit.I have a few bumps on the sides of my tongue that started to appear around early XXXXXXX My b12 normal,metabolic normal, thyroid normal, Rheumatoid arthritis negative. He did test for Lupus and Lyme disease which came up negative. He said the other blood looked good. I do have an uncle and cousin that has MS. My platelets have remained low between 30,000 and 64,000, I was very fatigued and taking afternoon naps cause the lack of energy.Sometimes i feel that I have to think about recent events more than usual. My memory at times is a little foggy. Occasionally my neck and back get stiff.
I'm 44 and felt like i was still in my 20's until that one night in Nov.out to dinner. Everything has gone down hill since that night. I'm not sure if something with the food could've triggered something that is the cause of this? It just seems odd that I felt great and 20 yr.'s younger with no medical history at all,then all the sudden i woke up in severe abdominal pain a few hrs after a late steak dinner. From that point on i went from no history to now carrying a folder full of test files over the past 9 months.Just to recap, my platelets have been in the 40k-64,000 range. I have not noticed any fever,NO skin rash,NO weight change,No night sweats ,No loss of appetite.No Swollen Lymph Nodes.My stomach has been causing a mild belly ache the past few weeks that just feels a little off.I was retested for my XXXXXXX which this time came back 15. When I had the HIV 1/2 AB screen at 87 days since possible exposure that came back NONREACTIVE result and an HIV RNA Quantitive HIV PCR Quant,Log 10 Hiv and the results came back Not Detected. This test was 94 days after possible exposure.What generation are those tests and how ACCURATE are they?? Thank You, XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Bimal Desai 2 hours later

Thanks again,

The HIV tests are 99.6% accurate as I have mentioned earlier.

I have gone through your detailed history, but it is silent about your exposure to HIV. The food you consumed definitely doesn't expose you to HIV infection. HIV is transmitted through body fluids (blood and genital secretions) of an individual infected with HIV. When these secretions come in contact with tissues such as those lining the vagina or penis, anal area, mouth, eyes (the mucus membranes), or with a break in the skin, etc., HIV may be transmitted.

Regarding the abdominal pain, t is been told by your gastroenterologist that you have small bowel inflammation - causes vomiting & loose motion. The symptoms of bowel inflammation can be recurring and bloody stools are also common.

Now we come to your constant low platelet count; based on the test it seems to be related to a connective tissue disorder say autoimmune disease. Positive XXXXXXX result is an indicator. But as you have no symptoms of your low platelet count like easy bruising or bleeding through bowels / nasal cavity or other orifices, the low platelets are not life threatening. So we may proceed evaluation the causes of low platelet (if there are any others); but as far as HIV is concerned, the results are accurate.

Hope this answers your query.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: How accurate is HIV ab1/2 blood test at 87 days from possible exposure? Have negative results 8 hours later
My possible exposure happened 36 days before i got sick and woke up in pain In Oct.of 2011. I was in Las Vegas and my wife and i had got involved with another female friend of ours.There was brief vaginal intercourse and heavily body fluid from her.I'm not sure of the other females status.When my life turned upside down in Nov. i assumed it was from that night at dinner but know it's been over 9 months of mystery.So when i was tested at 87 days for Hiv ab 1/2 and at 94 days for HIV RNA Quantitive HIV PCR Quant,Log 10 that was not detected i was scared if that wasn't enough time for the antibodies to be detected. I read mixed reviews on the "window period" that some say it is accurate and some say it my take 6 months to a year? currently my symptoms are low platelets,feet pain in the arches,achey neck,positive XXXXXXX flatulence and stomach that just feels a little off at times.I apologize for the long detailed events above,i'm just trying to figure out what happened so i can try to get my life back! Thank you so much for your help
Answered by Dr. Bimal Desai 15 hours later

Thanks for writing back.

The exposure has taken place roughly in last week of Aug 2011 or starting of Sep 2011.

Usually antibodies were produced within 3 weeks post exposure but they become detectable by four or six weeks after HIV infection. This four to six week period is known as a window period.

To detect it within window period there is a test which is called the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), which can detect the presence of HIV by studying the genetic composition of all the components of the blood.

Once the antibodies were formed it is always detectable in your blood.

That shows negative result in your case.
The most important is symptom.

Your present symptoms favour autoimmune disease.

We should not be rigid too much for 12 months to be completed. I think by this time you should get antibodies if you are exposed.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: How accurate is HIV ab1/2 blood test at 87 days from possible exposure? Have negative results 3 days later
Thanks for your help! Since i did have extreme vomit & diarrhea about 36 days after possible exposure,would that mean that the antibodies would be present and would've shown up in the test at 87 & 94 days? Is it possible to have symptoms and it not show in the test if it's too early to detect? Is the positive XXXXXXX i tested for the same as antibodies in HIV? Around the time i tested positive XXXXXXX is when i started to have extreme fatigue,feet pain in the arch,canker sores & spotty tongue and stomach with mild feeling of just being off.Are there multiple possibilities that can cause white patchy tongue or lesions?This occurred about 5 months after my ER visit. Since i had a high titre of 1:1280 in May 2012, does that mean there has to be something wrong? Is it possible to return to normal/negative XXXXXXX with no treatment or meds?Sorry if it seems that i'm repeating questions and are just re-worded, i'm just scared for my life and want to fully understand why i'm still sick after 9 months and no diagnosis other than ITP.Thanks again,you've been a big help!
Answered by Dr. Bimal Desai 14 hours later


Thanks again,

The probable reason of vomit & diarrhea about 36 days after possible exposure is small bowel inflammation as confirmed by CT scan and not due to HIV infection per se.

HIV antibodies if present usually are detected after 4-6 weeks of exposure. 87 days post exposure is not considered early by most clinician and if antibodies are present at that time, the test would have picked it. The symptoms you have are not related to HIV infection.

The positive XXXXXXX is due to your auto immune disease & symptoms associated with it suggest the first possibility is of ITP of auto immune aetiology. Usually auto immune disease is slow growing life long lasting effects. The titre may be fluctuating depends upon the disease deepness.

If this clarifies all your doubts we may terminate the discussion here. Do rate my answer if you are satisfied with this discussion.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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