[Question #3746] Index values (s/co)

34 months ago
Dear Doctors, I would like to clarify the  values ​​(s/co) in the 4th generation HIV tests. I performed four 4th generation exams in the best laboratory in my city, the exams were done 23, 31, 59 and 86 days after the incident of which I am afraid (dr.Hook explained to me that it is a risk free event but even then I realized that only would have peace with exams). All my exams had negative results, however, the values ​​were respectively 0.17 0.22 0.27 and 0.47, and to be positive the value must be greater than 1. In the laboratory they use the Architect - Abbott equipment (CMIA). 3 years ago I had another episode of concern with hiv and the results always gave around 0.07 or 0.08. I read a study from Kevin Delaney (CDC) where he compute the median of s/co for chronic patients and acute patients, in the acute the value is far lower, so I know the value is not completely random... I'm very scared, please help me.
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
34 months ago
As Dr. Hook said in his last comment in your previous thread 4 weeks ago, "No matter what the index value was, if the test was negative and should be believed."

Variable index values below the positive level are completely negative and there is no meaning to the differences in the indexes in your four ( !!! ) tests. If the identical specimen is tested 4 times on different days, it would give similarly different numbers.

In your opening thread a few weeks ago, you described yourself as a hypochondriac. I suspect it is worse than that:  you appear to be obsessed with HIV and nonexistant risks for it and over the details of testing. In this situation, counseling is the best alternative. Simply hearing the scientific facts is never going to be sufficient:  your mind will always come up with a "what if", "yes but", or "could I be the exception" question. However, this forum is not the place for it. As Dr. Hook told you, repetative anxiety driven questions are against forum policy -- and yes, this qualifies as such a question. It will have to be your last one; future new questions like these will receive no replies, without refund of the posting fee. This policy is based on compassion, not criticism, and is designed to reduce temptations to keep paying for questions with obvious answers. In addition, experience shows that continued answers tend to prolong users' anxieties rather than reducing them. Finally, such questions have little educational value for other users, one of the forum's main purposes. I trust you will understand.

HHH, MD
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34 months ago
Dear Doctor, I'm sorry if I was rude in my question, it was not my intention. I was also not aware of breaking the forum rules, sorry again. this will definitely be my last question. in your opinion I need more tests? are increasing values ​​definitely not an indication that I'm slowly seroconverting? I would like to inform you that 77 days before my "exposure" I took an injection of corticosteroids for a tendinitis, in case this might have any influence. thank you!
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
34 months ago
You were not rude. But what is the point in asking the same question repeatedly? (No matter how politely you might ask.) Did you think we might have changed our minds?

Your results show that there was zero anti-HIV antibody (and zero HIV p24 antigen) in all four specimens tested. The numbers do not reflect antibody levels. They are a more complex derivative of the biochemical reactions and measurements that comprise the test. The identical specimen tested on different days always would give different numbers each time. That each of your results had a higher number than the preceding one was only a coincidence. As we have now said several times, any and all results below the level defined for a positive result are unequivocally negative. Please do not have any more tests!

That concludes this thread. As noted above, this will have to be your last question about these issues. But I do hope this discussion, and the previous ones, have been useful. If you have additional questions about all this, I would encourage you to re-read all the replies you have had, word by word. The answers are there and would never change!

Best wishes and stay safe.
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