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HIV and AIDS

Retesting For HIV Following Risky Behavior

05/23/2006

Question:

I had written once before regarding my concerns about risky behavior. My story goes like this: I had sex with a sex worker and the condom broke during vaginal intercourse. I didn`t notice for about a minute, then I put a new one on. I was concerned about microscopic lesions on my penis caused by a woman`s teeth a day or two earlier. I could see no lesions and no blood was present during intercourse. I was tested 2 weeks after the incident and the results were negative. I know the testing window is 3 months--though some say 6 months. But isn`t the average time 3-4 weeks for a test to show accurately someone as positive or negative?

But after 3 months it`s more accurate, like 97%? How accurate can my test be if only done after 2 weeks? Also, I`ve been seriously stressed and a rash broke out on my back. I know this is also an HIV symptom. Should I worry more now? I`ve been under serious stress with little sleep. The dermatologist said to take it easy. Anyway, thanks a lot.

Answer:

2 weeks is too early for the HIV antibody to come back positive after a high risk behavior. You are right you should receive one test at 3 months and another at 6 months after the exposure. 

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Response by:

Pamposh   Kaul, MD Pamposh Kaul, MD
Assistant Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati