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Author Topic: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?  (Read 6829 times)

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Offline harkens123

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Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« on: April 02, 2012, 01:22:00 PM »
I'm a gay male and I've been dating my boyfriend since June 2011. We used condoms for sex the first few months of our relationship but by August we stopped since we were monogamous. He assured me that he was HIV negative and STD free. We were having unprotected anal sex with me being the receptive partner for months. In November 2011, I took an HIV test just as a routine and it was negative. We continued having unprotected sex until January 2012 when I left to go back to college. During a week of March he called me and said that he received a call from a health department saying that someone he was with had HIV and that he needed to get tested. He got tested and was found to be HIV positive (this was later confirmed by the western blot test).

I pretty much convinced myself that I had HIV because he did and went in for an 8 week rapid HIV test. To my surprise, it was negative. I just assumed that it was too early for antibodies to be detected even though I read that most people seroconvert by 6 weeks.

A couple weeks later, I started feeling very stressed about this whole situation and realized that I was feeling sick. The lymph nodes in my neck became swollen so I went to the doctor. He agreed that my neck was swollen and I told him about the exposure and he gave me another rapid test which was 10 weeks post exposure. Again, I convinced myself that I had HIV but found out that the results were negative again!

I've heard so many different opinions about my status that I'm so confused and scared. I spoke to one person at a testing center that she was certain I was going to stay negative and just to take the 12 week conclusive test to have a peace of mind. I was told by another the same thing. I was also told by a different HIV counselor that I'd have to wait 6 months and that the 3 months test wasn't very helpful to determine status and was only 97% accurate. I also was told by the doctor I went to that it was unlikely for my negative results to change at the 12 week test even with my high risk but that the test was necessary.

I read that the 12 weeks/3month mark is conclusive and that the 6 month mark is for people who have immune disorders, cancer, or other issues. I'm a healthy guy so I didn't think I'd fit into this bracket but I don't know what to think given all of this information.

I'm so scared that I have HIV because of the high risk since we were having sex for months. Can I trust my 10 week negative result and feel assured that my 12 week test will stay negative? Must I wait 6 months? Please help me with this  :'(

I fear that since I didn't take PEP I have HIV and I read some posts about people who tested negative multiple times then all of a sudden tested positive and had full blown AIDS.

*also, I've been feeling numbness in my left arm lately and have had a sore throat for a couple of weeks. I know that symptoms aren't necessarily indicative of HIV but I'm still worrying about them.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2012, 01:27:16 PM by harkens123 »

Online Andy Velez

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2012, 01:42:04 PM »
Before I say anything else I want to start off with my expecting you to continue to test negative. With those 2 negative results I expect that when you re-test at 3 months you will still come up negative.

A negative at 3 months is conclusive. The only circumstances under which testing out to 6 months is indicated is when longterm intravenous drug use is involved or organ transplant or treatment for a severe illness such as cancer. Otherwise all generations of tests currently in use will give a reliable result at 3 months.

From here on you and your bf need to be using condoms everytime for anal intercourse. No exceptions. The only confirmed risks for the sexual transmission of HIV are unprotected vaginal and anal intercourse. But condoms do a very effective job so use them everytime. You and and your bf can continue to have as much anal intercourse as you want to, but do it the safer way which means always using condoms.

When I read that you and your bf had begun having unprotected intercourse because you decided to be monogamous, there was a serious red flag in that. Until if and when a couple have both tested negative together at a reliable point condoms should continue to be used.

I expect you to come out of this ok. Good luck with your test.
Andy Velez

Offline harkens123

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2012, 01:53:04 PM »
Thank you for the quick response. I have learned from this situation that I can't trust what someone says about their STD status because they may not even know the truth about it. My boyfriend also got a full STD test after the HIV test and showed that he did not have any other STD but I'm going to take an STD test anyway just for reassurance.

I'm just so perplexed yet extremely thankful at how I've been testing negative. I've read countless stories about people who have had only 1 risky sexual encounter and have wound up with HIV so this situation is just so odd. I feel a bit more assured that my 12 week test will stay negative but the stress from all of this has been weakening my immune system and I'm afraid that it would make me more susceptible to develop HIV antibodies. Is that possible?

Online Andy Velez

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2012, 02:29:27 PM »
Keep it simple. With those two negative test results it is likely that you will continue to test negative. As to why you have dodged the HIV bullet, there are various reasons why that happens. The main thing is that you have avoided becoming infected.

And you are right about not relying upon what someone says about their HIV status. Even well meaning people often don't know their status. The only time when a couple can give up using condoms is when they are committed to a securely monogamous relationship in which BOTH have reliably tested negative together.

Having a full STD panel done is also a good idea.

Good luck with your tests.
Andy Velez

Offline harkens123

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2012, 07:27:39 PM »
Thank you again for the reply. I am scheduled to take the 12 week test next week and I feel much better about it. I researched so much online and read so many horrible stories that I started to doubt my test results. All of the 'symptoms' I was having such as the swollen neck and sore throat were due to my anxiety about this whole ordeal. I just cant wait to reassure myself I'm negative after the test and move on with my life.

Offline Ann

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2012, 04:12:34 AM »
Harkens,

I also fully expect you to continue to test hiv negative.

The counselor who told you that you have to test out to six months needs to retrain. The window period has been three months now for years. Most people seroconvert by six weeks - six months is overkill where testing is concerned.

You hit the nail on the head when you said "I have learned from this situation that I can't trust what someone says about their STD status because they may not even know the truth about it." It is estimated that a huge percentage of infections occur when the positive partner has no idea they are hiv positive. Instances of transmission due to lying or other deceptions are definitely in the minority.

People testing negative despite exposure - even repeated exposures - are not all that uncommon. Sometimes the exact conditions were never present (hiv is a fragile virus that has specific criteria in order to be able to infect - call it fussy) and some people are naturally resistant to hiv due to their genetic makeup.

While you should be happy you have managed to remain hiv negative despite your situation, don't push your luck. Please always use condoms here on out, both with your current boyfriend and anyone else you may have intercourse with.

Again, I fully expect you to continue testing hiv negative. Make sure you keep it that way through the simple use of condoms.

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 harkens123

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2012, 11:50:46 AM »
Ok, I'm taking my 12 week rapid test test tomorrow and I'm still really scared because I had a horrible cough, sore throat and headaches this past weekend. I also had protected sex with my HIV positive boyfriend and although we used a condom I'm still worried. Can I be assured that I'm fine?  :'(
« Last Edit: April 09, 2012, 11:53:04 AM by harkens123 »

Offline Ann

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2012, 12:07:51 PM »
Harkens,

Your ten week negative is not going to change.

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 harkens123

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2012, 12:09:53 PM »
Thank you, Ann, for the quick response. I'm feeling much more confident now. I need to get myself off the internet because I have read so many depressing stories relating to AIDS that it has been messing with my mind. I'll update on my test results tomorrow.

Online Andy Velez

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2012, 01:11:57 PM »
Like Ann I also expect you to test negative. You need to do yourself a big favor now and stay off of surfing the net. Otherwise you will continue to find more to feed your worst fears and all to no good purpose.

Cut it out, get tested and collect your happy negative result is my suggestion.
Andy Velez

Offline harkens123

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #10 on: April 13, 2012, 06:24:13 AM »
MY 12 WEEK TEST WAS NEGATIVE!!!! I can't even explain how happy i was when I found out yesterday! Thank you so much Andy and Ann for the reassurance and the replies. This whole ordeal has been hell for me. The woman who took my test said that since I had a known exposure I should test again at 6 months but that she would be highly surprised if my results changed. Can I take this 12 week test result and move on with my life or must I wait for the 6 months?

Offline Ann

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #11 on: April 13, 2012, 07:22:03 AM »
Harkens,

Congrats on your good, if not unexpected, news.

Unfortunately, that woman is parroting ancient guidelines. The window period for testing has been at three months - for anyone - for quite a few years now.

It makes no sense to test out to six months for "known exposures". We know (through epidemiological studies) that the majority of exposures/transmissions/new infections occur when one of the sexual partners has NO idea they're hiv positive.

In other words, the majority of exposures and transmissions are happening when people don't know they're happening. They have NO idea.

Let's call them "oblivious exposures", as opposed to "known exposures" - and keep in mind that "oblivious exposures" are firmly in the majority.

If it were actually necessary to have special window period rules for "known exposures", all those people with "oblivious exposures" would be falling through the cracks.

Special rules are NOT necessary and people are NOT falling through the cracks.

Three months is golden. You do not have hiv. You are conclusively hiv negative.

Make sure you stay hiv negative by using condoms for anal or vaginal intercourse, correctly and consistently, until such time as you're in a securely monogamous relationship where you have both tested negative together.

It really is that simple!!!

Ann

edited to add (after someone asked me what oblivious meant - he thought I might have been misspelling obvious and was confused.)

Definition of OBLIVIOUS

1. lacking remembrance, memory, or mindful attention

2. lacking active conscious knowledge or awareness —usually (but not always) used with of or to

— obliv·i·ous·ly (adverb)
— obliv·i·ous·ness (noun)

Examples of OBLIVIOUS

    The out-of-state motorist claimed to be oblivious of the local speed limit, even though the signs must have been hard to miss

    They were pushing and shouting and oblivious to anyone not in their group. —P. J. O'Rourke, Rolling Stone, 14 Nov. 1996

     He was oblivious to the fact that he had been hiv positive for several years, because he never tested, like all sexually active adults should do at least once a year.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2012, 10:14:03 AM by 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 harkens123

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2012, 02:04:55 PM »
Thank you again so very much! I've learned a lot from this experience and I'm going to be certain never to repeat it again. Cheers!

Online Andy Velez

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Re: Partner tested positive for HIV but I tested negative?
« Reply #13 on: April 19, 2012, 02:09:10 PM »
That's good. We're glad you found the exchanges to be helpful. Just make sure to always be using condoms in the future for intercourse and you will be well protected.
Andy Velez

 


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