Talking about home testing for HIV

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Possibility of not producing antibodies after window period (seronegative)

Hi recently I have been very anxious regarding testing & test accuracy. I recently took a 4th gen lab test through sh24 which came back negative outside of the window period. I then took a second test (Biosure) a few days ago also outside of the window period this came back negative as well, but anxiety has led me to reading about people who don’t generate an antibody response. I am unable to clarify or gain any knowledge on this subject and I am considering a PCR test to calm my nerves as I believe this doesn’t look for an antibody response – I was wondering if you have any information?

3 Responses

Becky, BioSure UK Ltd
 Work on 08th March 2021

Hi Anxious004, Antibodies remain within an individuals body and will still be detectable many years after exposure. Kindest regards, Becky

 Used on 21st January 2021

Thank you, this has helped with my worries a great deal, just one more thing - would antibodies remain consistent throughout even if a potential exposure was over a year or so ago?

Becky, BioSure UK Ltd
 Work on 21st January 2021

Hi Anxious004, Both of your negative results are highly accurate and are conclusive, given that you tested outside of the window period on both occasions. PCR tests look at either the RNA of the HIV virus or the HIV DNA in white blood cells - not necessarily the antibody or antigen response specifically. However, 4th generation tests looks for the antigen as well as the antibodies and therefore you should not be worried that your result is invalid due to lack of antibody production. Additionally, at 12 weeks it has been proven that 99.9% of people will have produced enough antibodies for the BioSURE HIV Self Test to accurately detect infection. To clarify, your negative results are accurate, reliable and conclusive - you do not need to retest. I hope this helps, if you have any other questions please feel free to leave them below. Kindest regards, Becky

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