Anonymous
Dear Sir or Madam:

I had unprotected vaginal contact (5 minutes at most, no eyaculation) almost 6 months ago. I had rapid POCT tests done at weeks 8,12,16 and 21 all non-reactive. Standards in Canada, the US and Mexico are 12 weeks for tests to be cocnclusive. Notwithstanding the specific cases of late seroconversion in a healthy 29 year old woman are there any extra concerns for late seroconversion?

Am I just feeling normal anxiety for having been so wreckless?

Thank you so much
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Anonymous
Hello,

Thank you for contacting AIDS Vancouver. It is very normal to be anxious, I will go over testing with you so you can put this situation behind you.

First of all I want to congratulate you on getting tested! It is the only way to know your HIV status, and especially after unprotected intercourse which is considered a high risk activity it is a good idea to get tested. You are correct about 12 weeks since your last exposure being the standard for tests such as the rapid test, 3rd generation and 4th generation test being conclusive. Since you have had a non-reactive result after this time you can conclude that you do not have HIV, assuming you have not had any further exposure to the virus.

Regarding the case of the 29 year old woman I am uncertain where you have read about this case but it can be difficult to interpret cases without all the information and I would caution you against reading sources that may not be credible. There are a only a few specific situations that can extend the period before test results can be considered conclusive to 24 weeks.

These are:

1. If you are on anti-viral treatment for Hepatitis C

2. If you are receiving chemotherapy

3. If you are on P.E.P. treatment for HIV

4. If you have previously been diagnosed with an immunodeficiency disease

If none of these situations apply to you, your test results are conclusive.

I hope this information will help to reassure you. You mentioned being reckless, and it is important not to be too hard on yourself. Sometimes things do not go as planned and dwelling on the past will cause you unnecessary stress. Moving forward you will have learned from the experience, and in the future there are some ways to reduce your risk of acquiring HIV and STIs. Using protection such as condoms is one way to reduce your risk, or engaging in alternate/lower risk activities will reduce the risk of acquiring HIV or STI. If you cannot guarantee condoms will be used taking PrEP will reduce your risk of acquiring HIV (but not STIs).

Best regards,

Alex

AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online

Monday-Friday 9am-5pm (PST)

1 844 INFO-HIV (Toll free Canada & U.S.)

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