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Author Topic: a false positive?  (Read 2254 times)

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Offline sldude

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  • Posts: 3
a false positive?
« on: January 31, 2007, 03:19:22 PM »
On or about December 20th I had unprotected anal sex with another man. (obviously I'm gay) On January 14th he called to tell me that he had tested HIV POZ. On Jan 22 (so two days shy of 5 weeks) I went into the Aids Foundation for a test. They use the Oraquick Advance.

The counselor informed me that my test was positive, but that he'd never seen such a faint line, infact they had to reach a consensus that the line was even there. One other counselor could not see it, but one could, so it was two to one yes. He showed me the test and I could not see the line.

I then asked for and received a second test, (same lot number). The second test was negative, no one could see the line. A few days later (Jan 25) I collected a blood sample and sent it to Home Access. That came back negative.

At this point I somewhat think that the first test meant nothing. But I can't help shaking the fear that in fact the first test did pick up something, but because I'm early in the window with perhaps very few antibodies, the second and third test did not. Is this possibly correct thinking or should I have confidence in the second and third test and conclude that the counselors were just seeing something because I fell into a "high risk" category? And obviously I intend to test again next week at six weeks.

I guess I should include that I was the insertive partner. Are there any statistics regarding the odds of contracting HIV after just one episode of insertive anal sex with a partner known to be HIV +?

Offline RapidRod

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Re: a false positive?
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2007, 03:25:30 PM »
Quit guessing at the tests and test at the 13th week past possible exposure. Oh, by the way, where was the condom? You know better.

Offline ACinKC

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Re: a false positive?
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2007, 03:33:29 PM »
In regards to your question, there are no odds.  It can happen the first time or it may not happen till the 10,000th time!  Your going to have to sit tight and wait out the window period.  13 weeks will be the ONLY way you know for sure.
LIFE is not a race to the grave with the intention of arriving safely
in a pretty and well-preserved body, but, rather to skid in broadside,
thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming--WOW! WHAT A
RIDE!!!

Offline sldude

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Re: a false positive?
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2007, 03:44:42 PM »
thanks, it's just not what I asked.  I'm more concerned about the reliability of the first test (which was marginally reactive) when two additional test were negative.  Can the first test just be disregarded?

Offline RapidRod

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Re: a false positive?
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2007, 03:59:23 PM »
sldude, that's the purpose of retesting. You are disregarding your other tests. You took the others to early to begin with. 

Offline ACinKC

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Re: a false positive?
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2007, 04:03:51 PM »
thanks, it's just not what I asked.  I'm more concerned about the reliability of the first test (which was marginally reactive) when two additional test were negative.  Can the first test just be disregarded?

Its exactly what you asked. 

"I guess I should include that I was the insertive partner. Are there any statistics regarding the odds of contracting HIV after just one episode of insertive anal sex with a partner known to be HIV +?"

And Rod is on the money with his response.
LIFE is not a race to the grave with the intention of arriving safely
in a pretty and well-preserved body, but, rather to skid in broadside,
thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming--WOW! WHAT A
RIDE!!!

Offline sldude

  • Member
  • Posts: 3
Re: a false positive?
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2007, 04:09:56 PM »
ok, well yes I guess I did ask that as a follow up.  However, your response is incorrect, there are statistical odds, which I have already found both on this site from the moderators "lesson on exposure" and other sites such as medhelp.  I realize the utility of odds, meaning even one exposure can infect.

I've also discovered that for people with intact immune systems, it is extremely rare to test positive if you haven't by week six and in fact by week 4 80%+ of people will already have detectable levels..

As far as condoms go, yes Rod you are quite right.  I do know better.  This was my one and only unsafe sex experience in years, with someone I've known and trusted.  and sure enough against the odds I was exposed.

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: a false positive?
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2007, 04:16:54 PM »
sl,

It is unlikely that your test result will change. As you have already noted, most people will seroconvert and test positive by six weeks. The average time to seroconversion is 22 days. Forget about the test with the faint line - it was an inconclusive result followed by two negative results.

As you have been told, you need to test again at three months for a conclusive result but I don't expect it will change. Try to keep yourself productively busy in the mean time.

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 Andy Velez

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  • Member
  • Posts: 24,913
Re: a false positive?
« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2007, 04:18:26 PM »
SL, HIV status is never something to guess about. Your initial test was definitely on the early side for a result.

As others have suggested, re-test at 13 weeks. I would say there is a strong likelihood you will test negative. But only the test can give you that answer reliably.

You need to learn from this experience. An insertive partner is at less risk than the receptive one, but the risk is still high and nothing to take lightly. You can have as much sex as you want with as many partners. Just do it the safer way and that means wearing a latex condom everytime. No exceptions, no matter what you think you know about your partner's history or how great he looks or anything else. A condom is a must. Period.

Forget about odds. I've known guys who became infected the first time they had anal intercourse and others who had many episodes before becoming infected. The thing is to not gamble because it's your life we're talking about.

Good luck with your test and keep us posted on how it goes.

Cheers,  
Andy Velez

Offline Coffeechick88

  • Member
  • Posts: 431
Re: a false positive?
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2007, 05:25:06 PM »
I think you can disregard the first test.  In the insert for the Oraquick test it does state that a faint line is a positive and even designs the 3 controls to give faint lines.  However, even faint lines, it is obvious it is there.  There is no guessing whether it is there or not--if you have to ask, it probably isn't real.  Since not everyone could see it, I would doubt that the first test was even a positive--sometimes those types of tests evaporation lines, improper clearing of the background, a faulty test packet, etc can make someone think there is a line when there really isn't. I am assuming here that the control line came up and they used proper technique.  Anyway, it is always recommended to repeat the test to confirm you actually got a positive-then they would need to send off for the standard serology tests to confirm if that was a true postive.  Your negatives afterwards supports the finding that you truely tested negative.  As the others have told you, a test at 3 months is the only definitive way you can say you are negative.  I am confident that you will continue to test negative.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2007, 05:27:52 PM by Coffeechick88 »
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