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HIV testing window period (Australian poster)

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Old 06-30-2011, 05:15 PM   #1
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Australia
Posts: 60
embarressedman HB Userembarressedman HB User
HIV testing window period (Australian poster)

Hi Guys
As you all know I had a low risk exposure. I also had a 30 days test.
HIV 1 and 2 ab/ag negative. Yeee Haaa
I would like to thank you all for the information that you gave and helping me move on. During my frantic panic I was able to find some information from the Australian Department of Health that I think will help other Australians and even international hiv worried individuals come to terms with the advice that they are given on this forum regarding window periods. This explains why all laboratories must ask for a second test at 3 months no ifs buts about it. But they do state the window period for a 3rd and 4th generation test is 3-5 weeks.

In my own words from the following.
Requirements for laboratory testing for HIV and HCV (2nd edition 2009)

The window periods. HIV tests are available as 2nd,
third and fourth generation tests. 4th generation tests include the identification of both antigen and antibody.
The window period is the tim between exposure and when the virus can first be detected this varies from test to test. The window period for 3rd and 4th generation ant HIV tests is 3-5 weeks after infection. If an individual is suspected to be at risk for seroconversion and the first test
result is negative or equivocal testing should be performed again at 12 weeks after the exposure for HIV to confirm the negative.

This is from my own version of what Dr Darren has said it has been cut well and truely down for the forum use. This is actually from a hand out that he made.
Dr Darren Russell. He is the President of the Australasian Chapter of Sexual Health Medicine, and is a past President of the Australian Federation of AIDS Organizations.
He states in one of his documents.
The so called 4th generation test is available.
Previously the 3rd generation test where available in Australia.
Many places in America still use the old 2nd generation testing.
The 4th Generation ELISA tests use a anibody antigen sandwich.
The effect is to greatly reduce the window period before the test becomes positive.
The previous window period was 3 months.
With 3rd generation tests this is more like 4-6 weeks
With 4th Generation tests it could be as little as 2 weeks.
This change will have implications on the window period and detecting seroconversions.
How do we inform the community??

This information may or may not help but they are all from Australian experts in the field and I do not see why these should not be taken into consideration when looking into HIV testing and the window period. The window period is probably the most talked about question on nearly all forums and the question always seems to pop up about the 3 month test. The test is to confirm the Duo test that is recommended after 4 weeks and the 3rd generation that is recommended at 6 weeks.

Last edited by embarressedman; 06-30-2011 at 09:09 PM.

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Old 06-30-2011, 05:34 PM   #2
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Australia
Posts: 60
embarressedman HB Userembarressedman HB User
Re: HIV testing window period (Australian poster)

I would like to add if you are in Australia and you would like further information on what I have just posted you can call the Sydney sexual health clinic. You can talk to a qualified nurse for free. She will tell you that a HIV 4th generation test at 6 weeks is 99.89% accurate. Will also state that this figure is stated for not only false negatives but it must take into account false positives. So she said "you can imagine how many false negatives we would get at this stage it would just be so unlikely"
Please people take note of this as this is something that is discussed but I never thought about taking this into account when it came to there percentages for accuracy.

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