Talking about home testing for HIV

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Please to refer this statement in relation to your test accuracy

“A false HIV-negative result may occur through the use of an HIV test that has low sensitivity as the initial assay within a national algorithm. Other factors may include early/acute infection (the window period), very advanced HIV disease where a person’s immune system is so compromised that HIV-antibodies are no longer being produced in high enough levels to be detected on standard HIV antibody tests, as well as user errors such as reading test result too early or mislabelling specimens or results. As mentioned above, another factor that can cause false nonreactive (negative) results occurs when people with HIV who on antiretroviral therapy seek additional HIV testing”.


**note from PEBL Feedback: the link is to a World Health Organization Q&A page about the quality of HIV testing

2 Responses

 Used on 06th October 2020

So question: is Biosure test accurate and enough sensitive to detect late stage infection or infection where level of IgG antibodies is very low? Some threads about stages of hiv points to dropping levels of antibodies through infection. I think many people want to know how is it? Please respond clearly.

 Used on 06th October 2020

Hello  - The post from Gary (in the thread about Test Sensitivity) seems to suggest that sticky antibodies do have a role in false negatives or am I reading this wrong? Here is Gary’s post in that thread:- ………. "I hope that I can help to clarify. There are a number of reasons why someone might get a false negative test result. The BioSURE HIV Self Test detects a person’s antibodies rather than the virus itself. One of the most likely causes of a false negative is that the person has produced a low level of antibodies when tested. This itself can be caused by a number of things: taking PEP or PrEP can delay antibody creation or the person maybe in the early stages of antibody creation, for example. Another possible cause is the “stickiness” of a person’s antibodies. Whilst all antibodies are similar the antibodies produced slightly different between people. Rapid tests are generally just not as accurate as large, laboratory instruments. Unfortunately few diagnostics are perfect. The BioSURE HIV Self Test has been developed and tested to ensure that it is very accurate. I hope that this helps to answer your question. "

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