HIV Transmission and Testing > Am I Infected?

Genotype test questions

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siobhan:
Hello everyone, I've been reading the forums here and you guys are so helpful - I thought I'd seek some info/experience from you all as what I'm finding on the net is really complicated and difficult for me to understand.

I tested positive on ELISA and indeterminate about 2 1/2 years ago. My doc didn't even hand me a pamphlet or a phone number or anything, just did a second test which came back almost two months later with the same results. She said I wasn't positive but I was still freaked out.

Of course, the test results drifted around in the back of my head for ages, and totally cramped my lifestyle. I got shingles and strange rashes. I went to an anonymous clinic about 1 1/2 yrs ago, told the staff what would likely happen with my results. They tested me and it came back the same way. Twice.

I went back to my GP and made her test me for Lupus, Celiac, all kinds of autoimmune stuff. Nothing. I let it go to the best of my ability, but the recent AIDS conference in Toronto brought me back to reading about testing etc, so I contacted my local AIDS Service Provider and this brings me to my question. They are referring me to an HIV clinic at the teaching hospital here and the doctors have stated that they want to do a genotype test on me. From everything I've looked at on the net, I can't see how that's going to help ... genotype tests seem to be more geared towards determining how well meds are working, and obviously, I am not on any.

I have a counsellor at the ASO who I will pummel with questions as well, but thought I'd see if any of you guys had experience with this genotype test thing.

Thanks a mil. :)

RapidRod:
I have no idea why they would want you to have genotype testing. You can read more about genotype testing in the lessons.

Andy Velez:
Siobhan, I would also want to know what the purpose of the genotype test is and more importantly why you cannot get a definitive up and down clear answer about your HIV status. Since a number of problems have been eliminated as a possibility you should be able to get a definitive HIV test result.

As you probably know neither shingles nor rashes are HIV-specifc occurences although I can see how they would trouble you when you haven't yet gotten a solid answer about HIV. No wonder you're concerned.

By the way, what was the nature of the original exposure which caused you to be tested?

Keep us posted on how this is going.

Cheers,

siobhan:
Yes, I do know that shingles/rashes aren't specific to HIV, but I think it points to immunologic problems.

My doctor usually put HIV and Hep C on my labs for my physicals because I used to be a heroin addict and a sex trade worker. I tested negative in 1998 on both ELISA and the pcr and Western Blot tests. I really have no way of knowing how I might have been exposed, but I am sure it wasn't via needles because everyone I used with has HEP C and I do not have that.

Matty the Damned:
Siobahn

I agree with the others. I can't see the purpose of a genotype test at this stage. I'd recommend you have another HIV antibody test (ELISA) and work from there.

Best of luck.

MtD

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