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Doctor insights on: Elisa Or Western Blot Tests For Hiv

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Dr. Sandra Lora Cremers
16 doctors shared insights

Hiv (Definition)

Hiv infection is caused by a retrovirus....This retrovirus binds to CD4 cells (for the most part). You may detect the virus by several different methods. An elisa test (enzyme linked immunosorbent assay). You may also detect it by doing a test referred to as a western blot (a gel protein electrophoresis). Thirdly by pcr (polymerase chain reaction) which ...Read more


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My ELISA HIV test came up negative after 1month exposure. How accurate is this test?

90%: There's a period of time after a person is infected during which they won't test positive. This is called the “hiv window period.” The window period can be from 9 days to 3-6 months, depending on the person's body and on the HIV-test that's used. ...Read more

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Should i get an ELISA or western blot test if my hiv1&2 rapid tests come out negative? Hiv rapid is reliable?

Should i get an ELISA or western blot test if my hiv1&2 rapid tests come out negative? Hiv rapid is reliable?

PCR: The reason i would urge you to get the pricey pcr is that is is clear that you are worried, and it is costing you emotional energy. Pcr is the gold standard and will give you the right answer before either of the others. I hope things turn out well, but having HIV is no longer a death sentence. Good luck, live and love responsibly, and keep taking a proactive approach to your health. ...Read more

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With todays ultra sensitive modern ELISA tests, what use is the western blot for hiv? A few months ago i received a weakly reactive cmia HIV ag/ab test, a 4th generation HIV combo test, and this was followed by a negative western blot and a negative p24 t

With todays ultra sensitive modern ELISA tests, what use is the western blot for hiv? A few months ago i received a weakly reactive cmia HIV ag/ab test, a 4th generation HIV combo test, and this was followed by a negative western blot and a negative p24 t

False-positives: Screening tests are designed to be highly sensitive so they don't miss anyone with the disease. However, they can be so sensitive that they occasionally give a false-positive result. That is, the test appears positive for someone without the disease. The western blot, being time consuming and extra cost, is only used to make sure a positive is really a positive. Talk with your doc for more info. ...Read more

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How reliable is a HIV ELISA test vs a western blot?

HIV testing: Elisa assay is quite sensitive (will detect antibodies best) but the western blot is more specific and confirm the results of the elisa if it was positive, as being either truly positive or false-positive. There are several other circumstances in which conditions other than HIV will produce a positive elisa assay. If there are symptoms and too early for antibody test, then PCR for RNA is best. ...Read more

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Is an HIV ELISA test always done with an western blot test?

No: In general, the elisa is done first, and the lab then does a western blot if the elisa is positive. However, it is possible to order just the western blot, in which case the elisa usually isn't done. ...Read more

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So there are no tests other than ELISA and western blot that would detect HIV if a person is sure of an encounter with an hiv+ person?

Repeat testing: It may take up to 6mos after an exposure to HIV for the elisa & western blots to turn positive. If you were exposed to HIV & had negative tests, it is recommended that you get retested in 6 months. If positive, your doctor will perform more detailed studies, like viral load & cd4 counts. Not all exposures result in HIV infection, however you should use precautions to protect yourself & others. ...Read more

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When tested for hiv, how should a strongly positive ELISA test (index above 7) and a negative western blot be interpreted? What additional testing is required?

Likely negative: This is probably a negative test. If the results haven't changed in a month, then you're definitely not infected. If you don't want to wait that long, you could get a viral load test. An undetectable viral load would be highly reassuring, but i'd still repeat the serology. ...Read more

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Dr. Ed Friedlander
1,422 doctors shared insights

Human Immunodeficiency Virus (Definition)

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a lentivirus (a member of the retrovirus family) that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (aids), [1][2] a condition in humans in which progressive failure of the immune system allows life-threatening opportunistic infections ...Read more


Elisa (Definition)

Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (elisa) is a test that uses antibodies and color change ...Read more