How long?

  • seelsa73

    Posts: 19

    Feb 07, 2012 5:36 PM GMT
    My bf of 16 months just found out that he is HIV+. He told me he must have got it before we got together from someone he hooked up with and that the condom must have broke. He is tested every 3 months when he goes to the doctor. I didn't think it would take so long to show up in a blood test. I'm hoping I am wrong, as I hate to think he was fooling around on me and taking those kinds of risks, but I'm just not sure. So I am wondering, is it possible for it to take 16+ months after exposure for HIV to show up on a blood test?
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    Feb 07, 2012 8:08 PM GMT
    Well...some tests like ELISA have the very unlikely possibility to fail...
    If that's what you wanted to hear
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    Feb 07, 2012 8:19 PM GMT
    There is a margin of error with most HIV tests.
    I get tested and counseled with each test. The HIV counselors have told me that 6-9 months is a long amount of time for the antibodies to be detected by "standard tests". These are tests that test for the antibodies, not the virus.
    My understanding is that it's unlikely (especially if one is being tested every 3 months) for it to take over a year to test negative once infected.

    I suggest going in and getting tested at an HIV clinic so you can speak with someone who can give you perspective on not just the cycle of HIV in the human body but also give you resources that might be help you manage your relationship with your bf and the feelings that are coming up.
    I'm so sorry to read your post... please feel free to reach out if you need support. *hugs*

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    Feb 07, 2012 8:28 PM GMT
    EasilyDistracted saidThere is a margin of error with most HIV tests.
    I get tested and counseled with each test. The HIV counselors have told me that 6-9 months is a long amount of time for the antibodies to be detected by "standard tests". These are tests that test for the antibodies, not the virus.
    My understanding is that it's unlikely (especially if one is being tested every 3 months) for it to take over a year to test negative once infected.

    I suggest going in and getting tested at an HIV clinic so you can speak with someone who can give you perspective on not just the cycle of HIV in the human body but also give you resources that might be help you manage your relationship with your bf and the feelings that are coming up.
    I'm so sorry to read your post... please feel free to reach out if you need support. *hugs*



    Yep, considering that one out of a tousand tests (I'm only sure about ELISA) fails...how likely is it to be the one for 5-6 times?
  • musicdude

    Posts: 734

    Feb 07, 2012 8:36 PM GMT
    lets do some math. If he does get tested every three months, and we assume that the first test after you two got involved was too early and that the last test was when it was discovered, that leaves at least three tests that should've detected the infection. typically, you get an accurate reading after three months of being infected (less than that even with newer tests). the chances of those three tests failing before the fourth one worked are slim to none.

    I'm sorry to say but i think your bf is lying to you. You should still go to a HIV clinic and get information directly from a professional though and you should also get tested yourself (for HIV and all other STDs)
  • seelsa73

    Posts: 19

    Feb 08, 2012 5:36 AM GMT
    It wasn't a test specifically for HIV as far as i know, but a general blood test to check for any kind of infection. I don't know if that changes anything but there u go.
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    Feb 08, 2012 5:40 AM GMT
    musicdude saidlets do some math. If he does get tested every three months, and we assume that the first test after you two got involved was too early and that the last test was when it was discovered, that leaves at least three tests that should've detected the infection. typically, you get an accurate reading after three months of being infected (less than that even with newer tests). the chances of those three tests failing before the fourth one worked are slim to none.

    I'm sorry to say but i think your bf is lying to you. You should still go to a HIV clinic and get information directly from a professional though and you should also get tested yourself (for HIV and all other STDs)


    Yeah, I was thinking this too, unfortunately, although I really do feel for the OP.
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    Feb 08, 2012 4:16 PM GMT

    http://www.sfaf.org/hiv-info/basics/

    "Recent studies show that a test taken at least 12 weeks (3 months) after the last possible exposure to the virus provides highly accurate results. Based on those studies, many testing clinics in California and other places use a 3 month window period. Rarely, a person could take up to six months to produce antibodies and that is almost always a person with a severely compromised immune system due to another disease, such as leukemia."
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    Feb 09, 2012 12:30 AM GMT
    seelsa73 saidIt wasn't a test specifically for HIV as far as i know, but a general blood test to check for any kind of infection. I don't know if that changes anything but there u go.
    Well.. without an RNA/or antibodies being detected (and those are specific tests) One wouldnt know!
    Guess he just 'neglected' to get tested for HIV..
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    Feb 09, 2012 12:33 AM GMT
    Brownale said
    musicdude saidlets do some math. If he does get tested every three months, and we assume that the first test after you two got involved was too early and that the last test was when it was discovered, that leaves at least three tests that should've detected the infection. typically, you get an accurate reading after three months of being infected (less than that even with newer tests). the chances of those three tests failing before the fourth one worked are slim to none.

    I'm sorry to say but i think your bf is lying to you. You should still go to a HIV clinic and get information directly from a professional though and you should also get tested yourself (for HIV and all other STDs)


    Yeah, I was thinking this too, unfortunately, although I really do feel for the OP.


    Both of these*
  • dfrourke

    Posts: 1062

    Feb 09, 2012 6:20 AM GMT
    As an HIV test counselor, I have never heard of it taking 16+ months to show antibodies.

    for HIV Rapid tests, where the tests actually look for the body's immune response to the presence of HIV (not HIV itself), the "window period" for most rapid tests tends to show antibodies for the presence of HIV as early as 2 weeks and as late as 6 months. 95% of the population shows antibodies within 90 days or 3 months. Rapid tests have a 99% accuracy in detecting preliminary positives.

    for HIV RNA tests, where the test is actually looking for the virus itself in the blood, shortens the window period from 2 weeks to as late at 6 weeks. This test is much more effective in detecting early infections.

    I'm not certain what the point of your question is actually. Many gay men do not get tested regularly and very few who seroconvert actually know when they were infected. It is possible these could be factors in his case.

    If you were practicing sex without a condom, I would get tested to give yourself good information.

    Good luck.

    - David icon_wink.gif

  • dfrourke

    Posts: 1062

    Feb 09, 2012 6:24 AM GMT
    Sorry, one last "weigh in"...CBC (complete blood count) tests are not an HIV test, they are used to look at the total cells contained within the blood...that test CAN indicate an infection or cancer if the white blood cell count is too high, but as you know HIV attacks white blood cells so this would typically not be seen in that type of test.

    My apologies for the double post.

    - David icon_wink.gif