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What does "borderline between 0.9 and 1.0 and positive above 1.0" mean?

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HIV AIDS Specialist
Practicing since : 1974
Answered : 2684 Questions
Hi Dr XXXXXXX I had sexual intercourse with a professional woman two months ago and used the condom. And around three months I had unprotected oral sex with another professional woman. I got tested yesterday and got the following results 1) Hiv anticore (1 and 2) negative 2) p24 Antigen: 0.206 with reference values negative below 0.9, borderline between 0.9 and 1.0 and positive above 1.0 COI your test result is negative for HIV 1 and 2 I understand that these results are negative. But I have the following questions would really appreciate detailed answers if possible. What does a numerical level above 0 but below 0.9 really mean? Does it mean a low level of antigen since it is above 0 but below 0.9? Could it be that my p24 level was higher but then dropped to 0.2 after two months. I read that p24 is more effective when done much earlier? Or could the level increase. I read that this level has to do with measurement and shouldn't be taken into account. That it is kind of a neutralization procedure and as long as the level is below the reference, the test is considered negative. But why are there different levels for different people? Why why have two different non-infected persons different levels of this antigen and are both above zero? Isn't it that this core antigen is either not present and has value of 0 or it is there and has a numerical value greater than zero? And yesterday during a chat with a doctor here I was told that "For any test value above 0, it means a possibility of the infection that requires repeat testing" which got me really confused. Could you please help me out?
Posted Tue, 4 Mar 2014 in HIV and AIDS
Answered by Dr. S. Murugan 3 hours later
Brief Answer: Anything below the 'CUT OFF'value is negative only Detailed Answer: Hi, Welcome to HCM. Thanks for posting query. First of all you had the vaginal intercourse as a protected one. You had unprotected oral intercourse with another woman. Oral sex carries a very low risk as far as HIV is concerned as per CDC,Atlanta. Regarding your HIV anticore 1&2 test, if it had been done after 3 months of your last high risk contact then it is highly reliable and you are HIV free. If the P24 Antigen test carried out 4 weeks after the high risk contact has more specific and a negative test confirms that you are HIV free. As far as the values you asked for has no meaning and any reading below 0.9 has same value only. It has nothing to do with individual variation in antigen level like appearing or disappearing. Whether it is below the 'CUT OFF' value or not. That is very important, not the individual numeric values. Each test had been marked by the manufactures after a thorough analysis with various stringent analysis. That is the important thing,not the individuals value and not try to correlate the same with different titres. I can not answer why this value differs among the negative people. You have to ask the same with a microbiologist. Too many questions will confuse you. Accept what is recommended by international scientific forum. They came to these conclusion after various experiences only. Dr S.Murugan
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: What does "borderline between 0.9 and 1.0 and positive above 1.0" mean? 13 hours later
Thank you for the reply. My HIV anticore 1&2 test and p24 Antigen tests were done at the same time: 2 months after my last protected intercourse and 3 months after unprotected oral sex. Do you recommend taking further tests? Can I have unprotected sex with my wife and continue life with my family as usual? Thank you
Answered by Dr. S. Murugan 30 minutes later
Brief Answer: You are HIV free. No more test needed. Detailed Answer: Hi, Welcome back. P24 Antigen test done 2 months after the high risk contact has more reliable and specific and conclusive. So a negative P24 antigen test confirmed that you are HIV free. Nothing to worry. No more test is necessary. You can very well continue your sexual life with your wife. Dr S XXXXXXX
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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