Talking about home testing for HIV

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Control line panic

I suffer from General Anxiety Disorder so sometimes my own reflection worries me! I particularly focus on health and end up researching all sorts. Recently I’ve had a health scare and when I googled possible reasons for it, a case involving a case published which set me off worrying. I had potentially exposure in 2014. Though only potentially and by this I mean I had receptive anal sex on a couple of occasions with the same guy both of which I freaked out and stopped way before he ejaculated plus he assured me he was negative. I blocked it out my mind until 2017 where I very anxiously took a biosure test and it was negative. But I’m now worrying as I know at the time I was nervous and I think I only waited about 12/13 minutes and took the test as my final answer. In fact the control line actually appeared after just a few minutes. My question is if I was positive would this line have showed after The control line? The test strip was white with one clear line. In fact I can’t even remember it not being white does this mean the solution didn’t run up or is does it vary in appearance ? Is it likely the control line can appear after a few minutes? And that’s the result once you have that line? I just panic a positive line may have appeared once I’d binned it – but I’m probably being paranoid. If I was positive and after such a long time since exposure I would imagine the positive line appearing as quick and being very obvious? I’m Bisexual and have since married and become a father and all is fine so I am hoping I just need to accept my result and move on. Any advice would be great.

2 Responses

Becky, BioSure UK Ltd
 Work on 24th August 2020

Hi Anxiousdude, The test is lateral flow and therefore runs from the bottom up. The time is takes for the lines to appear varies from user to user and the test line does not necessarily appear first although it is the bottom line. Usually when users test many years after exposure, like yourself, the test line is usually very strong in colour and clearly visible, even before the 15 minutes, due to the level of antibodies that would be present in the blood. However, we always recommend to read your result after 15 minutes and never after 1 hour, to give the test enough time to give an accurate result. However, as mentioned above, it is likely that you would have seen the test line if it had been there. The strip is usually discoloured as the solution is still running up the strip, but then will clear and the strip will usually appear white, although this again varies from user to user, usually depending on how much blood is supplied to the test. The solution must have run up the strip as the control line was visible. It's hard for me to comment on your result as although you say only the control line was present, since you read the test before the 15 minutes, it would be wrong of me to assume that your result was negative. Usually I would say to those users who are testing close to the window period and read their test outside of the correct read time, to retest. However, given that you yourself have tested around 3 years after exposure, I would say that if you were to be positive the test line would most likely be visible. Of course, if you want to be sure you can retest but I don't believe that your negative result would have changed in the 2/3 minutes. I hope this information helps, if you have any other questions please feel free to leave them below. Kindest regards, Becky

 Used on 23rd August 2020

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