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Author Topic: Window period.  (Read 3091 times)

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Offline Hannah

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Window period.
« on: March 30, 2013, 09:56:49 AM »
I am writing on this board because I am still concerned with the HIV sero-conversion window period.

I have engaged in unprotected sexual intercourses with three male partners (I am female), whom I knew well.

The two latest partners were very helpful and kindly complied with my request by mailing me their test results respectively 6 weeks and 5 months after the events occurred –they live overseas. 

Both were negative and, should I think, I have known them well enough for me to vouch for their honesty. However there is still a persistent concern lurking in my mind that they may have falsifIied the results –especially as one of them used an assumed name to test in a private clinic. To make things worse, the last one (who is actually the first one in the chain of events) point blank refused to comply with my request –however my last test was 10 months after the last event occurred.
Now the source of my concern also is that I am currently working in Russia as a foreigner, -a country, which does not deliver working visas to HIV positive people.  This has driven me paranoid. I am very afraid to test over here, as I am leery of their health authorities and disregard for privacy policies–how could I when I know they go so far as to actually deport people that have tested positive? For this reason I have always tested when I was back in my home country, or any other “safe” place.

My test results were as follows:   

Two weeks after the last unprotected event – point of care rapid test: negative.

20 days: laboratory ELISA antibody only test: negative.

7 1/2 weeks: - point of care rapid antibody test: negative.

7 1/2 weeks (again): Laboratory Combo test: negative.

11 weeks: Insti test: negative.

12 weeks: point of care rapid test: negative.

13 weeks: laboratory ELISA antibody only test: negative.

The Russian testing guidelines state that one should test first after 3 months, then after 6 months, and then you should test again within a year after the exposure!

Is there any reason on earth why such strict guidelines could be justified? By contrast in my home country, which is France, they dropped the 3 month guidelines, and now it’s only 6 weeks!!!  It really is a wide ballpark, and I can’t simply make head or tail of such discrepancies.

 When do you get 100% confidence that you are negative?

 I am feeling downcast and somehow find it difficult to make plans, especially in a country where I would be forbidden to work in anyway.  I like my job very much and I do need to be sure 100% I am negative. On the other hand, the fear of testing in Moscow is oppressing, and I can’t just fly home every other week-end. I am trying hard to move on with my life but anxiety and doubt keep creeping back.
I a worried about these dudes taking me for a ride and tampering with the test results they mailed me (insane, I know), and about the first dude that did not even bother to get back to me.

Is there any way my anxiety is justified or do I suffer from a mental disorder of some sort? Should I go for a six-month post exposition test? Is there any way I could end up positive in my next visa application?

Thank you so much for the help you are providing to others on this site.

Offline RapidRod

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Re: Window period.
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2013, 10:41:16 AM »
Page 11
  In an adult, a positive HIV antibody test result means that the person is infected, a person with a negative or inconclusive result may be in the “window for 4 to 6 weeks but occasionally up to 3 months after HIV exposure. Persons at high risk who initially test negative should be retested 3 months after exposure to confirm results

You have conclusively tested negative.

Offline Ann

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Re: Window period.
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2013, 10:43:04 AM »

The Russian health authority is woefully out-of-date with their hiv testing window period.

The vast majority of people who have actually been infected will seroconvert and test positive by six weeks, with the average time to seroconversion being only 22 days.

A six week negative must be confirmed at the three month point, but is highly unlikely to change.

At three months, it does not matter what generation test has been used. Three months is conclusive.

You have tested conclusively hiv negative. You do not have hiv.

Here's what you need to know in order to avoid hiv infection:

You need to be using condoms for anal or vaginal intercourse, every time, no exceptions until such time as you are in a securely monogamous relationship where you have both tested for ALL sexually transmitted infections together.

To agree to have unprotected intercourse is to consent to the possibility of being infected with an STI. Sex without a condom lasts only a matter of minutes, but hiv is forever.

Have a look through the condom and lube links in my signature line so you can use condoms with confidence.

ALTHOUGH YOU DO NOT NEED FURTHER TESTING AT THIS TIME, anyone who is sexually active should be having a full sexual health care check-up, including but not limited to hiv testing, at least once a year and more often if unprotected intercourse occurs.

If you aren't already having regular, routine check-ups, now is the time to start. As long as you make sure condoms are being used for intercourse, you can fully expect your routine hiv tests to return with negative results.

Don't forget to always get checked for all the other sexually transmitted infections as well, because they are MUCH easier to transmit than hiv. Some of the other STIs can be present with no obvious symptoms, so the only way to know for sure is to test.

Use condoms for anal or vaginal intercourse, correctly and consistently, and you will avoid hiv infection. It really is that simple!

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 Hannah

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Re: Window period.
« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2013, 12:19:02 PM »
Thank you very much for your answers and the information provided.

I will try and refrain from testing again for HIV.

Obviously the condom related advice are also very much appreciated.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Window period.
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2013, 02:08:44 PM »
Testing again is totally unnecessary for you to do. It's a waste of assets and re-testing will just feed your fears.

As you have already been told, you have unquestionably tested negative for HIV. Stop the drama and get on with your life. Really.
Andy Velez

Offline Hannah

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Re: Window period.
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2013, 12:01:37 PM »
Thanks a lot.

I know you are right. I think it's my visa problems that feeds my anxiety, as I know I will be screened again in a year or so, and it's quite stressing. It's very uncomfortable when you know your results get directly onto your boss' desk, basically without your consent. If something was wrong, I am sure the whole world would know about it.

Anyway, once again these are very sound advice, and I appreciate your help a lot.


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