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Author Topic: HIV RNA Early Test  (Read 1746 times)

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Offline JSparks1

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HIV RNA Early Test
« on: April 01, 2013, 05:45:30 PM »
Hello. I was wondering if a negative result of an HIV RNA Early Test at 8 days post exposure is a good indicator of status. I have a DUO test already scheduled for 6 weeks post exposure, but wanted to have some piece of mind.

Thanks in advance.

Offline RapidRod

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Re: HIV RNA Early Test
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2013, 06:11:53 PM »
You can obtain your conclusive test result 3 months post exposure. What was your possible exposure?

Offline JSparks1

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Re: HIV RNA Early Test
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2013, 06:29:12 PM »
A needle stick at work from an unknown source.

Offline JSparks1

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Re: HIV RNA Early Test
« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2013, 06:33:09 PM »
I am aware RNA tests are not conclusive, or used for diagnostic purposes, but I was hoping to find some reassurance in their use before antibody tests are accurate.

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: HIV RNA Early Test
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2013, 08:04:50 PM »
A needle stick at work from an unknown source.

That sounds frightening! Have you discussed this with your supervisor? If you are in the healthcare field I am rather shocked you weren't put on PEP.

Obviously, a discarded IV drug needle poses a risk for Hepatitis.

As for HIV, the variables are pretty extensive. Certainly size of the hollow-bore needle, volume of blood contained within it, HIV viral load and ambient temperature would all come into play and have a significant effect on the lifespan of HIV within the syringe. One study of HIV survival within syringes performed under ideal laboratory conditions (not the "real world" environment) found some viable HIV virus days later.

Of course, this necessitates A) blood with a rather high viral load being present in the needle, and B) the plunger of the needle pushing that blood into the person being stuck.

I have yet to find any evidence that needle-stick injuries outside of a healthcare environment or immediately reusing IV drug injection equipment have ever resulted in HIV infection. A do not thing the same holds true for Hepatitis however.

I think perhaps you are referring to the PCR testing when discussing an early test? Another moderator will correct me if I am wrong, but here's what I dug up:

<<PCR tests. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) detects the genetic material of HIV, instead of the antibodies in blood. A PCR test can tell whether you have HIV much sooner than the antibody test -- within two to three weeks of infection. This test is also known as a viral load test. It is more expensive but more definitive, especially early after exposure to the virus.

To learn where HIV testing is available in your area, call: 800-CDC-INFO (232-4636). If you have a positive HIV test result, see a health care provider who has experience treating HIV and AIDS as soon as possible.>>

Again, without knowing the specifics of your risk it's hard to give you a specific answer.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

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