[Question #4780] HIV RNA/STI

28 months ago

Had one-time, unprotected, heterosexual intercourse 16 weeks ago and I am concerned with various symptoms. I had a fever, flu, night sweats, fatigue, and genital irritation in the form of throbbing/itching. It is important to note that I really haven’t had any noticeable or visible genital lesions. My test results are as follows: 2 week, 5 week, and 13 week 10-panel test with early HIV RNA were negative respectively.

How likely is it that these symptoms are HIV or STI related? In addition, my fear is that I should have tested using a 4th gen opposed to early HIV RNA during the 13th week. How accurate are the three RNA tests used exclusively as I did? Should I be concerned with anything?


Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
28 months ago
Welcome to our Forum.  I'll be glad to comment. The answer to your question is not opinion, it is science-based.  Your symptoms are NOAT due to HIV.  Your flu-like symptoms are non-specific and while HIV is among the possible causes your tests (both the 4th generation test and the HIV RNA test) provide unequivocal proof that this is not HIV.

Your flu-like illness is NOT HIV.  No reason for concern and no reason for additional HIV testing related to the exposure you have described.  EWH
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28 months ago
Thank you for the quick response! To be clear, all three of the tests were RNA type. Does your statement of unequivocal proof still hold true?

Also, it it likely that these symptoms point to HSV or another STI with three negative 10-panel tests? 
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
28 months ago
Understood.  No question, this is not HIV (or for that matter, any other STI)

EWH
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28 months ago
I understand your response to the clarifying question. The symptoms have etched a strong reminder in my thoughts; however, I will move on.

Thank you for all you do for the STI community!
27 months ago
Why doesn’t this statement apply in my case?

“ But more to the point, as a general rule, all HIV experts would reccommend that in addition to PCR/RNA, to be 100% certain someone is free of HIV, an antibody test needs to be negative 4-6 weeks after exposure.” — HHH


Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
27 months ago
Our responses are tailored to the circumstances that questions report in terms of exposure, etc.  With multiple negative  tests following a statistically low risk exposure, there is just no need for further testing.  EWH---