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Author Topic: Just some questions  (Read 5025 times)

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Offline Miscalculatedman

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Just some questions
« on: April 24, 2011, 11:06:10 AM »
I've already walked down this road and have been told I'm negative without a doubt. However, it has left me with some questions which I can never really seem to get a direct answer for. Maybe you guys can offer your thoughts. I had a categorically "low risk" exposure, thus on all of the forums I have been told there's simply no way I'll test positive for this. I'm not going to name it to avoid distracting from my questions.

1. A low risk and a high risk, both are still a "risk" in my opinion. I'm also not a gambling man, so I don't look at risk numbers, I just see a risk and that's all. If the doctor tells you, before the window period is up, that you don't need to test anymore* because it's a low risk, then am I to follow the doctors advice, or the 3 month standard? Often I will hear my exposure is a low risk which equals a no risk, and thus need no testing to begin with, but then I'll read that 3 months is the rule. *(tested negative at 4, 6, 7, and 8 weeks rapid tests)

2. My doctor said the combined results of those tests along with the fact that it was a low risk equal no need to test further. Is this a normal equation? He assured me the tests were all the latest ones and that only rare few cases take longer than 6 weeks, and that testing at 7 and 8 as I nervously did basically verify my negative. I questioned him further and the tests are all 3rd generation rapid tests(I took both oral and fingerprick)

3. Symptoms are obviously no way to determine one has HIV and I clearly understand this. This is more a question for the worriers who still read these forums. Did the anxiety/intense stress/panic/fear/etc ever give you post nasal drip or a sore throat and cough that lasted well into 2 months(dry mouth, some weight loss and nausea as well)? My doc said I must have panicked so hard that I put too much stress on my system and this is how it's reacting. I've NEVER encountered this before in my life, and I've been in some intense situations before. Just curious here as I'm still having a hard time believing I can "think" myself into being sick.

4. I've been reading that people take the duo test as far out as 8 or 10 weeks. My doc said that the duo is only good around 28 days or 1 month, and there's no point in taking it later than that since regular antibody tests will suffice and pick up most infections at about 6 weeks. The duo isn't standard in my country, but it's still offered and it's more expensive than the rapid tests. Is this true that it's only good around a months time and there's no point getting a duo test later than that?

5. My doc also said the Elisa test is an older testing method and the rapid tests he uses are more accurate than the Elisa(I think the brand he uses is Determine). Anyone know if this is just talk to calm my nerves when I asked him about it? Either everything he's said to me is true and he's a super awesome, up-to-date doctor who knows his stuff, or he's just a really nice guy trying to cool me down(and I know he's right).

You're probably going to boot me for asking these questions, but they're the last ones and I'll leave it be and learn my lesson.

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2011, 11:20:29 AM »
Misc,

1. Low risk is not no risk. It isn't high risk either. For example, receptive unprotected anal intercourse is high risk. Unprotected insertive vaginal intercourse is low risk - but is still a risk nonetheless. Getting a blowjob is no risk. A low risk incident still requires a three month confirmation of a negative result.

2. I agree with your doctor that most people will seroconvert and test positive by the six week point. However, current guidelines still dictate that a three month confirmation is necessary. In your case, it would seem to be necessary for your own peace of mind if nothing else.

3. Stress can do all sorts of odd things to your body and yes, it is totally possible to convince yourself that you'll ill. We see it here all the time.

4. The duo tests also test for the p24 antigen and yes, this will disappear within three or four weeks when antibodies are being produced. At this stage of the game, you do not need the duo tests.

5. The newer tests are in use world-wide - I don't think the older ones are even manufactured these days. The newer tests are very good and very accurate. They are more prone to false positive results and do not give false negative results when used in the correct window period.

You don't want to say what your risk was, but I have a feeling you got a blowjob. If I'm correct, then you absolutely do not need further testing. The only things you would need further testing for is unprotected anal or vaginal intercourse, whether you were the receptive partner or the insertive partner. And even then, I do not expect your results to change.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2011, 03:13:27 AM »
Thanks Ann, much appreciated. I hope you don't mind, just another question or two...

My doc told me the window is a very steep curve. That after about 6-8 weeks, the curve goes straight up(or down depending on how you want to draw it) for the third month. So after 8 weeks or so, people who test positive are/were either people who didn't test prior to 8 weeks or people who just take longer to seroconvert, no?

After a test at 8 weeks, there's really no point in testing at 10 weeks is there(besides peace of mind and the desire to burn money)? It should be the 12/13 week mark right? I'm guessing if this is correct, this is related to the above question, since one or two weeks won't make as much difference in this time range as it would in the 4,6 and 8 week time range.

Last question, and probably the stupidest. I tried asking the manufacturer of the rapid tests I took about the storing conditions. Reason being my doc keeps his rapid tests in a cabinet, but they turn their AC off at night and it gets very hot here. I read that these things can't be stored at high temperatures, but my doc said it's totally fine. Do you think it matters?

I got into this stupid situation because I was hanging out with the wrong guys. My risk is very very low, but again I'm only here to learn at this point. The guys I hang out with are idiots and wouldn't know how to find this forum if it bit them in the face so if nothing else I'm hoping I can be better informed myself.

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2011, 08:46:17 AM »
Misc,

I'm not totally sure what your first question actually is, but I'll give it a go anyway.

What we recommend to people who have actually had a risk - and it really isn't clear whether or not you have had a risk - is that they test one time at six weeks and if that returns a negative result, that they do not test again until they can have the confirmation at three months. Twelve weeks is sufficient. There's no point testing between week six and week twelve as the result is highly unlikely to change. All testing in-between does is cost money and waste resources.

If there was a problem with how your doctor stores his testing kits, it would have become apparent before now. There's no reason to believe that ordinary warm room temperatures would have an adverse effect on the tests. If he were storing them in a hot oven, it would be different. But that's not what he's doing. You have to remember that these tests are in use all over the world, including hot places like Africa where AC is rare.

You're more likely to find a winning lottery ticket lying on your doorstep than you are to test positive after testing negative at eight weeks.

Give it up and get productively busy while you wait for your confirmatory test. With your reluctance to tell us what you think put you at risk for hiv, I suspect you didn't really have a risk anyway.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2011, 09:28:45 AM »
Ann, you're the best. That does fully answer my questions. You're very right about the hot weather conditions, and I should know better than to let my imagination and curiosity get the better of me. Thanks again and best wishes.

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2011, 09:42:38 AM »
Misc,

You're welcome. Now get off the internet and go do something fun or productive. The remaining waiting time will go much faster if you take your mind off hiv.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2011, 11:10:15 PM »
Sorry, back for one last Q. You'll probably label me bonkers at this point. I had a rapid Oraquick at 10.5 weeks, negative. I'm sure I'll continue to test negative to 12/13 weeks. Just a thought though, is there really any need to continue and test at 6 months, or is 3 months a done deal? I'm fairly sure my immune system is normal, I don't do any drugs, no chemo or organ transplants. To be honest though, how does anyone actually know if their immune system is compromised? Is there a test to determine that?*

*Only reason I'm back here is that I started seeing these odd white circles around my tongue in the morning. I've been taking some inhaler medications for this cough which is going away, I suspect it's a side effect of the medicine, but it got my mind wandering which is why the 10.5 week test. If I had white spots on my tongue, I would have tested positive by now, no? I know, symptoms are no sign of HIV, but it still hit the right panic button...
« Last Edit: May 02, 2011, 11:15:39 PM by Miscalculatedman »

Offline Matty the Damned

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2011, 11:17:18 PM »
Sorry, back for one last Q. You'll probably label me bonkers at this point. I had a rapid Oraquick at 10.5 weeks, negative. I'm sure I'll continue to test negative to 12/13 weeks. Just a thought though, is there really any need to continue and test at 6 months, or is 3 months a done deal? I'm fairly sure my immune system is normal, I don't do any drugs, no chemo or organ transplants. To be honest though, how does anyone actually know if their immune system is compromised? Is there a test to determine that?*

*Only reason I'm back here is that I started seeing these odd white circles around my tongue in the morning. I've been taking some inhaler medications for this cough which is going away, I suspect it's a side effect of the medicine, but it got my mind wandering which is why the 10.5 week test. If I had white spots on my tongue, I would have tested positive by now, no? I know, symptoms are no sign of HIV, but it still hit the right panic button...

Well you could actually take the 10.5 week result as conclusive. It isn't going to change. But 12/13 weeks is the official standard.

You certainly don't need to test out to 6 months. The window period is 3 months.

MtD

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2011, 11:36:30 PM »
Thanks Matty! I'll take your word for it and try to rest now. I feel like I haven't slept in months, literally... everyone has been telling me how thin and sickly I look, I thought something must be wrong with me, but it's probably just in my head. The anxiety and worry has been very destructive and I'm on antidepressants now. I need to exercise and get out more I guess. For my last, final test, I'm thinking to do an Elisa(lab based test) and a rapid on the same day. Do you think that's a good finish or is there a more definitive test?

Offline Matty the Damned

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2011, 11:46:21 PM »
Thanks Matty! I'll take your word for it and try to rest now. I feel like I haven't slept in months, literally... everyone has been telling me how thin and sickly I look, I thought something must be wrong with me, but it's probably just in my head. The anxiety and worry has been very destructive and I'm on antidepressants now. I need to exercise and get out more I guess. For my last, final test, I'm thinking to do an Elisa(lab based test) and a rapid on the same day. Do you think that's a good finish or is there a more definitive test?

Well you only need the rapid test. The ELISA blood draw will return precisely the same result: negative.

But you do whatever lifts your shirt. If getting both will give you peace of mind, go for it.

There are no more precision tests you can use. These will be sufficient.

MtD

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2011, 04:18:38 AM »
Thanks Matty, much appreciated. I called my doc about the white spots on my tongue, he said to keep going with the nasal sprays and meds for my throat issues. He also said to ignore the white spots on my tongue, that they're probably nothing. Yuck... oh well...

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2011, 06:39:05 AM »
Misc,

Inhalers can cause what you're describing. Your doctor should not ignore this as it may be thrush. Whatever it is, hiv is not the cause.

Your friends say you look sickly - and that's what intense anxiety will do to you - it will make you look ill. Keep working with a therapist so you can calm down already.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2011, 10:28:09 AM »
Thanks Ann, will do. I think I can start to rest now, I'll get my 13 week finale, be done with this and will have learned my lesson. I do volunteer and charity work so I need to stay in good health to keep taking care of the people I love, and I respect you guys for doing the same here on these forums.

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #13 on: May 08, 2011, 09:35:14 AM »
Guys, please don't hate me, last question and I'll go away. This one's a technical Q...

The doctors I'm working with can't say what generation tests they're administering for some reason, they just insist they're the latest ones... OK, so I've had a standard HIV test by blood draw and the result on paper 5 days later said, "HIV Ag Ab Screen" and then "Negative". The rapid tests I got were a Determine HIV 1/2 rapid finger prick and an Oraquick HIV 1/2 oral test, but at the time I took those, my doc said they're 3rd generation. However, I don't think it was the Oraquick Advance, it was just the Oraquick HIV 1/2 oral test, and the Determine HIV 1/2 wasn't the new ag/ab combo, it was just the HIV 1/2. Are these all 3rd gen tests or 2nd gen tests?

I'm not worrying! Just curious is all, I know regardless, I'm done at 3 months. just a week away...

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #14 on: May 08, 2011, 09:45:52 AM »
At 13 weeks all generations of tests currently in use will yield a reliable result.
Andy Velez

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #15 on: May 08, 2011, 09:49:21 AM »
Awesome, thanks Andy! I guess with all the talk about 3rd generation, 4th generation etc., I got curious about what generation the tests I've taken were.

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #16 on: May 08, 2011, 09:56:25 AM »
Misc,

It does not matter what generation test is used - any are conclusive at three months.

You never did tell us why you thought you were at risk for hiv infection. I hope you have not been wasting our time over a blowjob.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #17 on: May 14, 2011, 05:43:36 AM »
Thanks everyone, well, I had a rapid test at 84 days, 12 weeks, negative. Still on the edge of my nerves though, the doctor told me it was negative with some hesitation. He still doesn't know what's causing my oral thrush and persistent sore throat. He suggested if it makes me feel more peace of mind then I can retest at 6 months,... I did not like hearing that. I had a go at him for using older tests, they use the Oraquick HIV 1/2 oral test, not the latest Oraquick Advance, and they use Abbott Determine HIV 1/2 rapid, not the latest 4th gen ag/ab version, I think the version they use is the same one that's been used since 1999... Their Elisa only tests ab, not ag and ab, and none of their doctors know what generation it is. I suppose this doesn't matter at all, right? A negative at 3 months is a negative, and from reading these forums for months I am assuming this is as good as it gets.

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2011, 08:39:15 AM »
Misc,

You are still skirting the issue of what makes you think you had a risk in the first place. I still have the strong gut-feeling that you've been wasting our time - and yours - over a blowjob.

Whatever is causing your mouth problems, one thing is certain - you do not have hiv. You are conclusively hiv negative. Keep working with your doctor and/or dentist to find out what's going on. Whatever it may be, it is NOT hiv.

You are conclusively hiv negative.

You do NOT have hiv!

If you read the Welcome Thread before posting like you're supposed to, you will have read the following posting guideline:

Quote

Anyone who continues to post excessively, questioning a conclusive negative result or no-risk situation, will be subject to a four week Time Out (a temporary ban from the Forums). If you continue to post excessively after one Time Out, you may be given a second Time Out which will last eight weeks. There is no third Time Out - it is a permanent ban. The purpose of a Time Out is to encourage you to seek the face-to-face help we cannot provide on this forum.


Please consider yourself warned!

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2011, 01:47:52 PM »
Sorry everyone,... I did exactly what you told me not to do and went ahead and tested once more at the 6 month mark. Those rapid tests just weren't sitting well with me and I felt I should just get a lab test done and clear my mind of this whole thing. The lab ran an HIV Duo,... and sadly it came back positive. The lab ran a Western Blot and it came back negative though. My doctor said it is probably a false positive and asked me to return in two weeks to test again. Obviously I'm flat out terrified. I burst into a heavy sweat on my way out of the doctors office and haven't been able to think clearly since. I have read through the archives of a few other sites, but most of them point to pregnancy as a cause for a false positive. I'm a guy and I'm not pregnant. I don't know what to expect, is it possible that if the next test came back positive that I may get a positive Western Blot? I'm sorry, I should have stopped at 3 months, but now I'm stuck with this situation... :(

Offline RapidRod

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #20 on: September 13, 2011, 01:51:56 PM »
Don't want to hear anything about it, you don't have HIV.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2011, 02:13:31 PM »
False positives are not uncommon. A positive result is always confirmed or not by a western blot. The western blot is more specific and sensitive. A negative result with a western blot always trumps any earlier positive result on any other test.

You are HIV negative. Period. You need to stop this drama and dragging the situation out. We are not going to indulge you any further about this situation. You are HIV negative. If you come back with more buts and what ifs you are very, very quickly find yourself getting a Time Out from this site.

HIV is not your problem but your obsession about it is. We can't help you with that problem in this setting. Get professional help to deal with that.
Andy Velez

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #22 on: September 14, 2011, 04:54:31 AM »
Misc,

As Andy points out, false positives are not all that uncommon. In addition to pregnancy (obviously not your problem), underlying autoimmune disease (possibly not yet diagnosed) can also cause false positives. Sometimes they just happen.

As you have also been told, any positive antibody result MUST be confirmed with a Western Blot. If the WB returns a negative result, you are hiv negative. End of story.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #23 on: September 14, 2011, 12:19:36 PM »
Thanks Ann, Andy, and Rod, I'm sorry to keep lingering on this forum, I didn't mean to be troublesome.

At this point I'll just accept what I've got and hope for the best when they retest. I also feel confident it will be negative and that I'm negative, as none of the facts add up. Anyway, thanks for putting up with me for so long.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #24 on: September 14, 2011, 12:37:27 PM »
Good luck with your test result which I certainly expect will be negative.
Andy Velez

Offline Miscalculatedman

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #25 on: September 26, 2011, 10:27:28 AM »
Got my retest results back today. Same as the first set, I tested positive twice with CMIA, then negative with the Western Blot for HIV 1 and HIV 2. My doctor said to forget about it and that I don't have HIV. I think I'm going to take her advice and move on. The number this time was different as well, 1.72, went down almost an entire point. She said that number is arbitrary and I should ignore it and focus on the Western Blot results. I don't like this situation, it's confusing, but all the documentation I have read and also on these forums states that the Western Blot governs so that is the final result. She said that their CMIA test is super sensitive and that they've had a few cases like mine that simply never resolved. A few hotlines suggested I pursue an NAT but I just don't have the cash for that, and even if it came back positive, I would have to get a WB anyway and that's been negative. Anyway, thanks for putting up with me, hopefully this is the last time I post here. Wish you all the best.

Offline Ann

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Re: Just some questions
« Reply #26 on: September 26, 2011, 11:05:37 AM »
Misc,

You do not need NAT testing, you need to accept that you are conclusively hiv negative. You do not have hiv.

You may want to see your doctor to discuss screening for underlying, undiagnosed autoimmune diseases as autoimmune diseases can cause false positive antibody tests which are then disproved by the Western Blot.

Ann
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

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Offline Miscalculatedman

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  • Posts: 14
Re: Just some questions
« Reply #27 on: September 26, 2011, 11:09:06 AM »
Thanks Ann. One of my doctors suggested that, he said the geographic tongue and the chronic sore throat and cough are strong signs of an autoimmune disorder or something allergy related. Both of which I have read can cause false positives. I'll try not to speculate on this anymore, for now I need to earn money to recover from the financial damage all of this testing has caused.

 


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