HIV Prevention and Testing > Do I Have HIV?

Unclear on results.


Hi everyone. I wonder if anyone can help me. I have just received an Hiv blood test back checking for antibodies and antigens. I live in France and am alone here. I have no doctor and was just given my results by email. I had unprotected sex around 5 weeks ago. My result says negative but that HIV antibodies of 0.34 were indicated. I can only assume this means I have HIV if there are antibodies present and that its negative because there are not enough there yet. Please can someone tell me if this is the case. Thank you in advance.

Jim Allen:

It's the signal value or background noise, for lack of a better phrase. If you took ten tests, they would all be slightly different and never be 0.00. As long as it's below the cutoff value, it's a non-reactive result. This cutoff is usually about 1.0, depending on the lab.

It's unclear to me from your post how many weeks after the condomless intercourse this test was performed, so ill mention to test six weeks after your last potential exposure with a blood-draw (lab) HIV antibody test. The result at this time will rarely change, and retesting at three months generally isn't needed.

Here's what you need to know to reduce your HIV risks:
Use condoms for anal or vaginal intercourse correctly and consistently, with no exceptions. Consider talking to your healthcare provider about PrEP as an additional layer of protection against HIV

Keep in mind that some sexual practices described as safe in terms of acquiring HIV still pose a risk for other easier-acquired STIs. So please do get tested at least yearly for STIs, including but not limited to HIV, and more frequently if condomless intercourse occurs.

Also, note that it is possible to have an STI and show no signs or symptoms; testing is the only way to know.

Kind regards


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Thank you Jim. The cutoff is <9. I wasn't sure if it had to be zero and internet information tends to be contradictory. it was 5 weeks between testing and sex. I have another at home test on the way and I have to book a second lab test in two weeks to be sure. Thank you for responding to me.

Jim Allen:
You're welcome.

It's unlikely the non-reactive result you have will change when you do retest to confirm the results so try to relax as for the home test, if that's a rapid test then wait until the three-month mark. 


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