Anonymous
Question 1) If I had a very high risk exposure is a HIV test still considered conclusive at 3 months?
I'm wondering because I've been having ongoing symptoms for a long time after my 3 month negative result.

Question 2) Are you all sure a HIV test will detect the virus for everyone by 3 months except people who have the 4 conditions that delay window period? Question 3) Whats the likelihood of someone with no other medical conditions turning positive later at 5,6, or even more months down the road?

I need reassurance because I'm really doubting my test results and I'm always sad and stressed thinking I have HIV and the test result isn't correct, please help me.
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Anonymous
Hi there! Thanks for contacting the AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online with your HIV related questions/concerns. We're happy to help!

I understand you're looking for some clarification about your test results. Let me see if I can help make things clear for you.

1) regardless of the exposure, HIV tests are considered conclusive after 3 months. This is because the test window period is how long the body could (at the longest) take to seroconvert. Has nothing to do with how high risk the activity was!
In terms of your symptoms, at AIDS Vancouver we don't go by symptoms to classify HIV for a number of reasons. One is because they're vague and often mimic other viral infections like the flu. But on top of that, some people have symptoms, some people don't, and the type and severity vary significantly. Finally, a lot of people have anxiety-related symptoms when awaiting test results. Partner with your health care practitioner to see if you can determine what's actually causing the symptoms.

2) Yes. This is what doctors/scientists/BC CDC all currently say.

3) This is not applicable. All tests are conclusive after 3 months, like you said.

I understand you're feeling worried about your test result. Please believe me when I assure you that your test is conclusive! Think of it this way. 95% of infections are caught at 1 month. That leaves just 5% to be caught in the remaining two months of the window period. Additionally, it is HIGHLY unlikely that someones result changes from negative to positive even from the 1-3month mark. This helps ensure that test results really ARE conclusive at 3 months. Please try to accept your result and move on, you deserve to!

Check out the BC CDC Guidelines [HERE ](http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/DownloadAsset?assetId=B4093BA93C2B40D5971127F3E950BE57&filename=hiv-testing-guidelines-bc.pdf)

I hope this was able to ease your worries and help you move on!

Sincerely,
Christina

AIDS Vancouver HElpline/Online

Monday-Friday 10am-4pm PST

604 253 0566 Ext 299

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