Early Detection Hiv Testing
Here weâll go over HIV testing at the earliest possible time. Weâll address the accuracy of the tests, timing, and test interpretation.
Early HIV testing accuracy and timing
The best tests for early detection of HIV are the HIV Ag/Ab or HIV viral load .
|Viral load tests||Earliest time the test can be done||Ideal time for testing|
|13 days post exposure 50% accurate||44 days post exposure 99% accuracy|
|HIV RNA||Can detect as few as 50 virus copies||10â15 days 90% accurate||42 days post exposure 99% accurate|
|HIV RNA||Can detect as few as 10 virus copies||5 days post exposure 90% accurate||42 days post exposure 99% accurate|
Early HIV testing interpretation: positive versus negative
It is ideal if both early detection HIV tests, fourth-generation HIV and HIV RNA, are done at the same time.
Person considered negative
Both tests are done at the ideal time after exposure , and they are both negative
Repeat test is necessary
If both tests are negative, but clinical suspicion is high or it was a high-risk contact, repeat the test in 2 weeks
Person considered positive
- If both the HIV Ag/Ab test and RNA PCR test are positive, this confirms an HIV infection of unknown duration.
- HIV Ab test is necessary to start the treatment
Summary of early HIV test interpretation
It should help you understand the following:
Factors That Increase Risk For Hiv Infection
Sexually active but no history of being tested for HIV.
Use of shared drug equipment with a partner whose HIV status is unknown.
Unprotected anal or vaginal intercourse with a partner whose HIV status is unknown.
Multiple and/or anonymous sexual partnering.
For men, a history of sex with other men.
Diagnosis of other STI, hepatitis B or C.
Sexual activity, sharing of drug-use equipment, or receipt of blood or blood products for people originating from, or who have travelled to, regions where HIV is endemic.
Receipt of blood or blood products in Canada prior to November 1985.
When Is The Most Accurate Hiv Test
HIV is a syndrome that weakens human immunity caused by the Human Immunodeficiency Virus . When entering the human body, the virus multiplies in large numbers and attacks the body’s immune system including macrophages, T-lymphocytes, thereby reducing the patient’s immunity leading to other harmful microorganisms that are in good conditions to grow or enter.
After entering the body, the HIV virus usually multiplies by 3 common types:
- Viruses multiply rapidly within the first week of infection. At this point, the virus begins to spread throughout the body, and may also remain in the cerebrospinal fluid before being detected in the blood.
- After about 3 to 6 weeks, the infection starts to show signs of decrease. Especially about 95% of people infected with HIV at this stage still feel healthy. Signs of infection are usually absent or not apparent. Some people with HIV infection in an early stage will only have some symptoms like the common cold. Therefore, if an HIV test is taken at this stage, it may not give accurate results.
- The third type is the silent infection. The HIV test, if desired, the most accurate results are usually 2-3 months after exposure to the HIV virus.
In special cases, for newborns inherited from the mother, to know exactly, it is necessary to wait until the baby reaches 18 months of age to be able to identify.
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If My Test Is Negative Do I Need Get Tested Again
Talk to your doctor or the counselor or social worker at the testing site to see if you need to get tested again.
Some reasons to get tested again include if you:
- have sex without a condom
- are a guy who has sex with other guys
- have had sex with more than three partners in the past year
- get an STD
- are a woman and are pregnant
What Is It Used For
An HIV test is used to find out if you have been infected with HIV. HIV is the virus that causes AIDS . Most people with HIV don’t have AIDS. People with AIDS have an extremely low number of immune cells and are at risk for life-threatening illnesses, including dangerous infections, a severe type of pneumonia, and certain cancers, including Kaposi sarcoma.
If HIV is found early, you can get medicines to protect your immune system. HIV medicines may prevent you from getting AIDS.
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How Long Does It Take To Get An Hiv Test
Usually, when you get an HIV test, you can get a quick test result on the same day if done in the hospital. With more advanced and more specialized tests, the result may be longer. Different testing methods can have different times for the exact result .
However, in order to be able to confirm whether the HIV test result is accurate or not, it is necessary to satisfy one of the following 2 cases:
- Case 1: test negative for 2 consecutive times. Each test is at least 3 months apart and the patient does not have any potentially infectious behavior arising during the above time.
- Case 2: tested negative once and in about 3 months after the first test, no more risky behavior arises.
However, due to the “silent” nature of the dangerous HIV virus, doctors always recommend that you get tested for HIV as soon as possible.
Your Chances Of A False Negative
A false negative is definitely a concerning concept because it would mean that you have HIV but the test told you that you had nothing to worry about. To measure a persons chances of getting a false negative, the FDA requires testing organizations to measure the sensitivity of the test. This refers to the tests ability to give a positive result when a person has HIV.
The sensitivity ratings about the HIV RNA test offered at STDcheck.com has an official sensitivity rating of 100 percent. In laymans terms, this essentially means that if you have HIV, the test will definitely let you know. You should not have to worry that the test accidentally missed any HIV RNA in your body.
What Do The Test Results Mean
There are three possible test results:
1) Negative . The test did not find any evidence of HIV infection. You probably dont have HIV .
2) Reactive . The test assay has reacted to a substance in your blood. This does not necessarily mean that you are HIV positive. It means you need to take more tests to confirm the result. These extra tests are best done at a healthcare facility where they have access to the most accurate HIV testing technologies.
3) Indeterminate, equivocal or invalid. The test result is unclear. Another test needs to be done.
Do You Need An Hiv Test
In a word, yes. Everyone does. The CDC recommends that everyone 13 to 64 years old undergo HIV testing at least one time.
People with specific risk factors should be tested more often, including:
- Men who have been sexually active with other men
- People who have engaged in vaginal or anal sex with a partner who is HIV positive
- People who have had more than one sex partner since their last HIV test
- People who have shared needles used for tattoos or body piercings
- People who have injected drugs or have shared needles or other drug-use items, such as water or cotton, with others
- Those who have accepted drugs or money in exchange for offering sex
- People who have been diagnosed with other sexually transmitted diseases
- Those who have been diagnosed with or treated for hepatitis or tuberculosis
- People who have had sex with a person who has at least one of the above risk factors
- People who have had sex with someone with an unknown sexual history
- People who have been sexually assaulted the test should be taken as soon after the assault as possible
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Testing Process For Hiv Rna
The testing process for HIV RNA is convenient and simple. If you are looking to be tested, then follow the steps below.
- Locate your testing center close to you by entering in your zip code.
- Fill out the form with your information and make your payment.
- You will get an email that has a Lab Requisition Form that has a testing code. The address of your testing center will also be included.
- Print out the form and testing code and take it to the testing center.
- Get tested in just 5 minutes using a small blood sample.
- You will receive your results in 1-2 days.
- If your test is positive, you will have a consultation with a doctor over the phone.
Where Can People Find Free Hiv Testing Locations
The CDC maintains a list of HIV testing locations for people who want to find out whether they have contracted the virus. This National HIV and STD Testing Resource can be accessed at . This site includes the ability to search for free testing locations as well as locations that provide rapid tests. Some clinics only provide HIV testing. However, sexually transmitted diseases clinics routinely provide HIV testing along with testing for diseases like chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and herpes.
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Where Can People Find More Information About Hiv Testing
There are several resources for people interested about the facts of HIV testing.
- The national HIV, STD, and hepatitis testing site Get Tested helps visitors find free, fast, and confidential testing.
The CDC web site is also an excellent source of information: https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/basics/testing.html.
Who Should Be Tested For Hiv And How Frequently
It is recommended that the consideration of HIV testing be made a component of routine care. In general, care providers should take an active approach to HIV testing, offering HIV testing to clients whether or not clients have asked for a test. In the provision of routine medical care, and in discussion with the client, care providers should consider whether there is a benefit to an HIV test.
HIV testing is associated with several advantages:
- a negative test result is an opportunity for clients to take an active role in remaining HIV negative
- the early detection of HIV, especially at the acute stage, can improve outcomes for individuals and prevent further transmission of HIV
- detection at any stage of the disease, prior to wasting and dementia, is an opportunity to initiate lifesaving treatment and other related healthcare services
- opportunities arise for conversations with clients about risk-reduction strategies
2.1.1 Testing recommendations
An in-depth comprehensive HIV behavioural risk assessment is not a requirement for offering an HIV test. An assessment that the client understands how HIV is transmitted, the implications of testing , and how to interpret the test results is sufficient.
For occasions when clients may not be able to accurately estimate their risk, the guide includes more detailed guidance in Appendix B for conducting rapid risk assessments and a more detailed technical review of HIV transmission risks can be found in Appendix C.
2.1.2 Couples testing
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Importance Of Hiv Testing
HIV testing is vital for individuals to receive early treatment, care, and information to manage their disease. This includes information regarding the way to forestall passing HIV to people.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 to get tested for HIV at least once as part of their medical routine. You may also need an HIV test if you are at higher risk of getting infected. HIV is mainly transmitted through sexual contact and blood, so you may be at an increased risk of contracting HIV if: You are a man who has had sex with another man You have had sex with an HIV infected partner You have had multiple sexual partners You injected yourself with drugs such as heroin or shared needles with another person
Clinical Indications For Hiv Testing
Individuals requesting an HIV test.
Individuals with symptoms and signs of HIV infection.
Individuals with illnesses associated with a weakened immune system or a diagnosis of tuberculosis.
Unprotected anal or vaginal intercourse or use of shared drug equipment with a partner whose HIV status is known to be positive.
Pregnant or planning a pregnancy and their partners as appropriate.
Victims of sexual assault.
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What Do The Results Mean
If your result is negative, it can mean you don’t have HIV. A negative result may also mean you have HIV but it’s too soon to tell. It can take a few weeks for HIV antibodies and antigens to show up in your body. If your result is negative, your health care provider may order additional HIV tests at a later date.
If your result is positive, you will get a follow-up test to confirm the diagnosis. If both tests are positive, it means you have HIV. It does not mean you have AIDS. While there is no cure for HIV, the disease can be effectively controlled with medicine. The medicine used to treat HIV is called antiretroviral therapy . ART can significantly reduce the amount of HIV in the blood. People with HIV who take ART before the disease gets too advanced can live long, healthy lives. If you are living with HIV, it’s important to see your health care provider regularly.
Will Every Hiv Patient Eventually Get Aids
With todayâs medical advances and understanding, most HIV infected patients wonât develop AIDS as long as they strictly maintain their antiretroviral therapy. Though this is true in most cases, there are times when AIDS is inevitable and canât be prevented.
Regardless the person or case, however, chances are always without a doubt improved with good medical care and early detection.
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Hiv Tests Used In British Columbia
These tests measure antibodies to HIV. Antibodies are proteins made by the immune system when the body is exposed to an infection. It takes time for the body to make antibodies after it is exposed to HIV, and different people make antibodies at different rates.
The window period for antibody tests is between 3 weeks and 3 months. Up to 95% of people will have antibodies after 6 weeks, and 99% of people will have antibodies after 3 months.
The point-of-care HIV test is an antibody tests offered in some locations in BC. The HIV Confirmatory Assay is an antibody test used to confirm a preliminary positive HIV result.
The 4th generation Enzyme Immunoassay Test test is a combined antigen / antibody test. The antigen, or viral protein, used to detect HIV is called p24 antigen. This p24 antigen shows up in the blood soon after a person gets HIV.
The 4th generation EIA test is the standard HIV laboratory screening test used in BC. Ninety-nine percent of these tests will be positive 6 weeks after a person gets HIV.
This test looks for the genetic material of HIV in the blood. It is also known as the “early HIV test” or “RNA test”. Ninety percent of NAATs are positive 10 to 12 days after a person gets HIV, and over 99% are positive after 6 weeks.
The RNA NAAT can be specially ordered by doctors or nurses if someone has had a recent high-risk exposure to HIV and/or they are having symptoms that are highly indicative of HIV.
Other Factors Influencing Hiv Transmission Risk
Within each route of transmission, estimates of the risk of transmission vary widely, likely due to the role of behavioural and biological co-factors. Viral load appears to be an important predictor of transmission, regardless of route of transmission. However, the evidence indicates that viral load is not the only determinant, and other co-factors, such as the presence of co-infections, play a role in increasing or decreasing the risk of transmission.
The strongest predictor of sexual transmission of HIV is plasma viral load . A dose-response relationship has been observed, where each ten-fold increase in plasma VL resulted in an increased relative risk of transmission of 2.5 to 2.9 per sexual contact. The concentration of HIV in genital secretions also plays a major role in sexual transmission. While there is a strong correlation between HIV concentrations in plasma and in genital secretions, some studies have found genital tract HIV shedding in 20% to 30% of men and women without detectable plasma viral load. Much of what is known about the impact of viral load on the sexual transmission of HIV is derived from studies of heterosexual populations. Very little is known about the relationship between HIV viral load and rate of transmission through anal intercourse.
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Does Hiv Always Show Up On Testing
No, if someone was recently infected, it might not show up with testing. How quickly HIV shows up on testing depends on the type of test done:
- Testing that looks for the virus itself can find HIV 728 days after infection.
- Testing that looks for HIV antibodies can find HIV antibodies 312 weeks after infection.
When Can The Hiv Rna Test Be Used
Anyone who thinks they may have been exposed to the HIV virus through unprotected sexual activity, contact with blood that is infected, an infected mother who is pregnant/breastfeeding/caring for her newborn, or someone who has shared dirty/non-sterile needles are some who can/would enjoy the benefits of early HIV detection.
- Possible HIV exposure within past two weeks
- Childrenborn to mothers who are HIV positive
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