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Old 07-10-2012, 09:51 AM   #1
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Risk, test results and questions

Hello Everyone,

I first want to thank you all for the time and effort that you dedicate to this forum. It helps us all out tremendously. I will start by laying out my backgorund and what brings me here.
I am a 29 year old female that had unprotected vaginal sex with the same man on two occassions (April 27th and May 7th) and I had unprotected oral sex (I gave oral) with the same man on June 14th. We both talked about our status regarding all STIs and each said that we did not have any (I know this was stupid as you hope people are honest and sometimes they don't really even know but was done is done at this point). I know I had high risk due to the unprotected vaginal intercourse. I took a rapid Uni-Gold test at 59 days (8 weeks and 3 days) post exposure and it came back negative. Here are my questions:

1) I developed a pretty bad cough and a pimple-like rash (doesn't itch) on my forearms at about 55 days post exposure. This cannot be related right? From what I have read it would be too late to be ARS.

2) How reliable is this 59 day test? I have read that I need to test out to 6 months and while I am happy to do that, I would like to know if I can put my mind at ease in any way with this result or if it means nothing.

3) If my 8+ week test is reliable does it have the likelihood of changing to positive given the following: I am an asthmatic that takes advair (100 micrograms of a corticosteroid) once a day. Does this have the possibility of delaying my body's ability to make antibodies?

3) I have been counting the weeks for testing from the second act of unprotected intercourse. Is that accurate or do I need to start counting my possible exposure from the unprotected oral sex on June 14th?

Thank you very much for your time and I am sorry about all the questions. I am a little nervous and looking for an expert's advice.

 
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Old 07-10-2012, 09:57 AM   #2
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Thank you for the kind comments.

Quote:
Originally Posted by busta1282 View Post
Hello Everyone,

I first want to thank you all for the time and effort that you dedicate to this forum. It helps us all out tremendously. I will start by laying out my backgorund and what brings me here.
I am a 29 year old female that had unprotected vaginal sex with the same man on two occassions (April 27th and May 7th) and I had unprotected oral sex (I gave oral) with the same man on June 14th. We both talked about our status regarding all STIs and each said that we did not have any (I know this was stupid as you hope people are honest and sometimes they don't really even know but was done is done at this point). I know I had high risk due to the unprotected vaginal intercourse. I took a rapid Uni-Gold test at 59 days (8 weeks and 3 days) post exposure and it came back negative. Here are my questions:

1) I developed a pretty bad cough and a pimple-like rash (doesn't itch) on my forearms at about 55 days post exposure. This cannot be related right? From what I have read it would be too late to be ARS.

It sounds nothing like a ARS rash and if it was you would have tested positive for sure.

2) How reliable is this 59 day test? I have read that I need to test out to 6 months and while I am happy to do that, I would like to know if I can put my mind at ease in any way with this result or if it means nothing.

Incorrect. 3 months is the CDC guidlelines and that test will be final and conclusive. Your 8 week test is 99% conclusive and very very unlikley to change.

3) If my 8+ week test is reliable does it have the likelihood of changing to positive given the following: I am an asthmatic that takes advair (100 micrograms of a corticosteroid) once a day. Does this have the possibility of delaying my body's ability to make antibodies?

Your medication will not effect your test at all.

3) I have been counting the weeks for testing from the second act of unprotected intercourse. Is that accurate or do I need to start counting my possible exposure from the unprotected oral sex on June 14th?

Oral sex is not a valid form of HIV transmission, so your unprotected sex is the concern and that would be from the latter time.

Thank you very much for your time and I am sorry about all the questions. I am a little nervous and looking for an expert's advice.
Hey no problem and i hope the information has helped you.
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Old 07-10-2012, 10:22 AM   #3
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Hello Apollo,

Thank you very much for your quick and kind reply. I appreciate it very much.

Take care.

 
Old 07-10-2012, 11:28 AM   #4
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by busta1282 View Post
Hello Everyone,

I first want to thank you all for the time and effort that you dedicate to this forum. It helps us all out tremendously. I will start by laying out my backgorund and what brings me here.
I am a 29 year old female that had unprotected vaginal sex with the same man on two occassions (April 27th and May 7th) and I had unprotected oral sex (I gave oral) with the same man on June 14th. We both talked about our status regarding all STIs and each said that we did not have any (I know this was stupid as you hope people are honest and sometimes they don't really even know but was done is done at this point). I know I had high risk due to the unprotected vaginal intercourse. I took a rapid Uni-Gold test at 59 days (8 weeks and 3 days) post exposure and it came back negative. Here are my questions:

1) I developed a pretty bad cough and a pimple-like rash (doesn't itch) on my forearms at about 55 days post exposure. This cannot be related right? From what I have read it would be too late to be ARS.

2) How reliable is this 59 day test? I have read that I need to test out to 6 months and while I am happy to do that, I would like to know if I can put my mind at ease in any way with this result or if it means nothing.

3) If my 8+ week test is reliable does it have the likelihood of changing to positive given the following: I am an asthmatic that takes advair (100 micrograms of a corticosteroid) once a day. Does this have the possibility of delaying my body's ability to make antibodies?

3) I have been counting the weeks for testing from the second act of unprotected intercourse. Is that accurate or do I need to start counting my possible exposure from the unprotected oral sex on June 14th?

Thank you very much for your time and I am sorry about all the questions. I am a little nervous and looking for an expert's advice.
If that was a ARS rash, it would definitley show up in your tests. I too had a rash on my torso which was pimply. HIV rash is more of a red sarcoma colour, Apollo? and i tested negative .

8 weeks is a very good sign of your HIV status.

 
Old 07-11-2012, 11:19 AM   #5
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Hello again,

Besides providing comfort and relief during a scary time, I find these boards to be very educational. I would like to ask just a general question from the experts if it is alright. The internet can be a wonderful (and terrible) thing. I have read so much information out there that I am trying to sort through all of it. Apollo had mentioned that my 8+ week test is 99% conclusive but that a 12 week test is conclusive period. (6 months is outdated). Some sources state that the average time to seroconversion and detectable antibodies through todays modern tests is roughly 25 days.
I took my test at 59 days (which is over double the "average") I assume that the test I took (Uni-gold, which I believe is classified as a 3rd generation test) is a modern test and decently reliable before that 12 weeks which is why Apollo gave me the response that he did. Why then is the window period still 12 weeks? It seems as though I have a 1% chance of it changing to positive but, if some of the information I have acquired is correct, that would only really be the case if I were immunocompromised (i.e. receiving chemotherapy or taking medications for an organ transplant) or had taken PEP. I am just trying to become as educated as possible on the matter so that I do not make assumptions that would be incorrect based on ignorance.

Thank you again for your time and effort.

 
Old 07-11-2012, 12:02 PM   #6
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Hi,

You are correct the internet can be a wonderful place and in the same token can be a dreadful place. There is so much written about HIV online it is very difficult to separate myth from fact. I assure you after looking for the last six years I am still surprised at some of the stuff that people come to this forum with.

What you have quoted is actually pretty accurate. Most everybody that has been infected with HIV will test positive at about 6 weeks (almost all HIV infections are now detected between 2 to 6 weeks). The reason the window period still remains at 12 weeks is to catch those very rare occurrences of people who don’t produce enough antibodies to be detected by an HIV test. These cases, really are very rare and few and far between. It is actually Governments bodies that set the window period and all manufacturers of HIV tests have to offer data that basically guarantees that their tests will be conclusive at 12 weeks to gain approval. Realistically, with modern HIV tests this period is outdated and any negative result at 6 weeks is as good as, but protocol determines the final test date, not actual the reliability of the tests.

My own opinion and this is only my opinion is that the window period should have been reduced years ago to 6 weeks. With modern HIV tests and the huge advances made since 2004 having the 12 week window period is well out of date. But ultimately it is Government officials and Health organisation that set this period and they seem very slow or reluctant to react to such advances. It is the old adages “if it isn’t broken don’t fix it”. Given the pace that these bodies seem to move at I am guessing the HIV window period will (needlessly in my opinion) remain at 12 weeks for the foreseeable future.

Testing beyond 12 weeks is extremely rare and is only under the circumstances you have listed but even under these circumstances it is extremely unlikely that anybody with a 12 week negative result would ever test positive today.

Kevin.

Last edited by blokecalledkev; 07-11-2012 at 01:03 PM.

 
Old 07-11-2012, 12:20 PM   #7
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Well 12 weeks is the current guide lines set out from the CDC. Also the manufactuers do not approve the test as conclusive until 12 weeks, so thats why 12 weeks is required. That said, experience has proved that 99% of people with serconvert before 6 weeks, so thats why anyone testing negative at that stage has very much gone past the point of sero. That said it is still possible that some have tested positive past that date although with modern tests its not been seen in recent years.

Because of this we still adhere to the current CDC guidelines, but my opinion still stands, your very much their and ive not seen negative test at this stage turn positive.

I hope that helps?
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Old 07-11-2012, 03:10 PM   #8
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Thank you both very much, it does help and clears things up quite a bit. One last question. These modern tests that we speak of, it includes the rapid antibody tests like oraquick and unigold right? It is not just restricted to the antigen/antibody tests or the PCR RNA/DNA tests?

Thanks a bunch.

 
Old 07-11-2012, 03:28 PM   #9
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Re: Risk, test results, and questions

Hi,

Yes it does, and please the letters PCR sends shivers down my spine, if you value your sanity stay clear, ok?

Kevin.

 
Old 07-11-2012, 06:08 PM   #10
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Thumbs up Re: Risk, test results and questions

Hello Gentlemen,

Kevin - Don't worry, I read up plenty on the *** test and its high degree of false positives that I am not going to do that to myself. I feel pretty good about my 8+ week test but will follow through with the 12 weeks as is suggested by the CDC and I will report back to you guys then. For whatever reason it will make me feel better (probably because they term is as a conclusive result). Its funny how a government body like this can weigh so much on how you feel about something. If they said 8 weeks was conclusive I would feel even better right. I do not feel as anxious as I used to thanks to the wealth of knowledge you all have and the information that you have been able to give me.
I do have to say that I should consider myself lucky given the high risk I exposed myself to and I have certainly learned from this experience and will not take it for granted. No act of unprotected intercourse is worth this anxiety.
Kevin and Apollo - May I ask how you all came to be such experts in this topic? It seems like you all know everything there is to know and are able to debunk the myths out there. Do you read primary literature? Work with doctors that specialize in HIV?

 
Old 07-11-2012, 06:39 PM   #11
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Re: Risk, test results and questions

Your risk was minuscule to start with. HIV is rare in the heterosexual population and on average it's only transmitted in 1 in 1000 vaginal sex exposures. You are being very responsible by testing, but I'm just posting this to put your original risk in some perspective. While it is possible to be infected in your situation, it is extremely rare: most women who get infected through sex have multiple high risk exposures (e.g. months or years of sex with partner confirmed to be infected).

Given your low risk, the chance of your test result changing at 12 weeks is virtually zero; collecting your negative at 12 weeks is a mere formality.

 
Old 07-11-2012, 11:50 PM   #12
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Re: Risk, test results and questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by busta1282 View Post
Hello Gentlemen,

Kevin - Don't worry, I read up plenty on the *** test and its high degree of false positives that I am not going to do that to myself. I feel pretty good about my 8+ week test but will follow through with the 12 weeks as is suggested by the CDC and I will report back to you guys then. For whatever reason it will make me feel better (probably because they term is as a conclusive result). Its funny how a government body like this can weigh so much on how you feel about something. If they said 8 weeks was conclusive I would feel even better right. I do not feel as anxious as I used to thanks to the wealth of knowledge you all have and the information that you have been able to give me.
I do have to say that I should consider myself lucky given the high risk I exposed myself to and I have certainly learned from this experience and will not take it for granted. No act of unprotected intercourse is worth this anxiety.
Kevin and Apollo - May I ask how you all came to be such experts in this topic? It seems like you all know everything there is to know and are able to debunk the myths out there. Do you read primary literature? Work with doctors that specialize in HIV?
Hiya, im glad your feeling better. I dont concider myself an expert by any stretch in fact im not compaired to the real experts. Most of the myths are very common and indeed the reading of facts very much proves their is a lot of old information out their.
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Old 07-12-2012, 12:41 AM   #13
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Re: Risk, test results and questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by busta1282 View Post
Hello Gentlemen,

Kevin - Don't worry, I read up plenty on the *** test and its high degree of false positives that I am not going to do that to myself. I feel pretty good about my 8+ week test but will follow through with the 12 weeks as is suggested by the CDC and I will report back to you guys then. For whatever reason it will make me feel better (probably because they term is as a conclusive result). Its funny how a government body like this can weigh so much on how you feel about something. If they said 8 weeks was conclusive I would feel even better right. I do not feel as anxious as I used to thanks to the wealth of knowledge you all have and the information that you have been able to give me.
I do have to say that I should consider myself lucky given the high risk I exposed myself to and I have certainly learned from this experience and will not take it for granted. No act of unprotected intercourse is worth this anxiety.
Kevin and Apollo - May I ask how you all came to be such experts in this topic? It seems like you all know everything there is to know and are able to debunk the myths out there. Do you read primary literature? Work with doctors that specialize in HIV?
Hi,

Expert? No absolutely not. I had an experience years ago and knew very little about HIV. Afterwards I just decided that there was a lot of stuff written about it and most of it seemed to be contradictory and a lot of it had frightened me. So I started to read. I read and I read. I read expert opinions, medical studies and any other source of information (I guess I kind of went over the top). But I did learn that because of all the stuff online this can cause no end of anxiety and stress. I read to the point where I had a crystal clear view of what HIV was, how it was transmitted and the fear it generates. I also found out how easy it was to misunderstand it, be afraid of it and how just the mention of it can ruin lives. It got to the point where I just had to say “wait a minute that’s not right, thats not how it works…” I guess I have been saying it for a few years now.

I read the opinions of those that actually had HIV. How it affected their lives and how it was so misunderstood, how they felt stigmatised by society and you know what? I felt ashamed. I felt shame because I knew so little about something that had been around for 30 years and I too was uneducated and frightened. I was basically clueless. So I shamed myself into learning.

Like Apollo said if you read the right sources most myths about HIV can be dispelled and the wall of fear that still seems to surround can be brought down.

Six years later I am still reading and learning.

Kevin.

Last edited by blokecalledkev; 07-12-2012 at 01:17 AM.

 
Old 07-12-2012, 04:17 AM   #14
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Re: Risk, test results and questions

imo, you are in the clear
i tested positive myself in 19 days from exposure
i work closely with nurse's and doctor's who specialize in hiv
(for some of them it is thier life's work)
in a major university
and i'm involved in many hiv studies,some have been
even published in the new england medical journal.
anyway, from what i was told they are fairly confident with test results
in about 21 days from exposure.
the information you have recieved is
spot on as usual from our valuable members here..
i think it is pretty safe to say
you will be ok..

 
Old 07-12-2012, 05:16 AM   #15
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Re: Risk, test results and questions

Thank you for all of your valuable feedback.

Joggen - I appreciate the risk evaluation, thank you.

Smiteler - you must be learning some amazing things working so closely with these folks. If you don't mind my asking, was your test obtained using a rapid antibody test? And do the folks you work with believe that taking a rapid antibody test at those 21 days gives a pretty good story? I find a of this information that I am learning to be very valuable.

Apollo and Kevin - to me you are experts. You answer all of our questions with such conviction and confidence based on what you have learned and you aren't wrong in the information you give. Experts.

Thank you for your time

Last edited by busta1282; 07-12-2012 at 05:18 AM.

 
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