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    6 week HIV antibody test
    Faithhope1970 posted:
    I was starting an IV and the needle did not retract all the way and pricked my finger through my glove. The patient was tested that day and was negative for HIV and positive for Hepatitis C. I did not qualify for PEP. I tested at 6 weeks, actually 44 days after, and was negative for HIV and Hep C. What if the patient was in the window period? I was told by the physician at the PEPline I could breastfeed because patient was negative. My husband had a sore throat for 3 days, fever for one day, and a sore neck, which he said felt like a pinched nerve. Did I give him HIV even though I tested negative for HIV and my patient tested negative for HIV because we might be in the window period? Why wasn't I given PEP?
    georgiagail responded:
    I'll try to answer some of your questions....

    HIV screening tests for antibodies the immune system begins to produce after transmission has taken place. So does testing for Hepatitis.

    While the recommended time for testing is 90 days (3 months) after a potential exposure, the vast majority (95 percent) of newly infected folks have enough antibodies present by 1 month (actually 25 days) post transmission to test reactive (i.e., positive) by current testing methods.

    By three months this has increased to 99.99 percent.

    Thus, someone who tests at 6 weeks would fall somewhere inbetween these two percentages. In other words, it is, statistically, VERY MUCH in your favor that you do not have HIV (or Hepatitis C for that matter) and thus could not pass either of these viruses onto your husband.

    As to whether this patient was in the window period...I don't know the patient so I cannot answer this nor can I answer why you did not qualify for PEP.

    However, keep in mind that we do not attempt to diagnose HIV by symptoms (i.e., your concern about your husband) and often symptoms of a cold (sore throat, fever, sore neck) represent, well, just a cold and nothing more.

    In other words, testing bets symptoms every day and your 44 day test results are an excellent sign that you do not have either of these viruses from this event.

    I am assuming you will be doing a follow up test at 90 days, correct? If so, please post these results for us and let us know how you are doing.

    Thank you...


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