[Question #5367] Instant finger prick tests

23 months ago
Hello Drs,
You might remember me.
I had neuropathy post exposure of finger cut to secretions.
This has not settled after 8 months but i have had HIV testing.

At 3 months and whilst symptomatic 
1- HIV Finger prick test - in UK - company BETTERTOKNOW - test ?alere = negative at 2 minutes but was this long enough to wait. Dr was confident.
2- HIV Finger Prick test - in UK - company SUPERDRUG - test BIOSURE home test kit = negative at 15 minutes.

Is this conclusive or should i do a HIV test from venous blood from the arm?
Is delayed seroconversion possible?
Any rare forms of HIV missed by this tests?

Many thanks

Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
23 months ago
Welcome to the Forum.  Apparently you are using a different user name or e-mail account for this question as when I search for your earlier questions I do not see them.  

There are many different brands of HIV tests, including rapid, fingerstick tests.  I am not familiar with the two tests you mention but if they have been approved for use in the UK they would have been carefully evaluated before approval for use.  You do mention the Alere test in your initial description as well and this is certainly a highly reliable test.  Testing six months after an event of concern will provide reliable reults which should be believed.  In answer to the two three specific questions that I see:

1.Finger stick HIV tests are highly reliable at six months.  Believe the results.  There is no need for testing of venous blood.
2.  Delayed seroconversion is an internet myth which does not exist.  Believe your test results.
3.  No.  Once again, the idea that there are strains that are missed by approved tests is an incorrect perception which is common on the internet but is untrue.  believe your results.

EWH
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23 months ago
Thank You Dr Hook

Just to clarify, it was at 3 months that i did the finger prick test not 6 months.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
23 months ago
Your test results will still be quite reliable when performed three months following a possible exposure.  EWH---
23 months ago
Last message.
The biosure Home test kit states 99.7% sensitivity and 99.9% specificity at 3 months.

The reason I did it was the above test was because a few days earlier I had tested with i believe Alere - negative - but read at about 5 minutes although instructions state 15-20 minutes. The dr was super experienced and confident the test was negative. I left feeling great but then panicked Incase he read the results too soon.

Given my initial exposure was rubbing vaginal Secretions with a 1 day old 1cm paper cut on my finger - no oral or penetration, and the 2 tests above at 90 and 93 days - would you be confident that I am HIV negative?

Thank you 
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
23 months ago
Yes, as I intended to indicate in my initial response.  Your test results are definitive and should be believed.  The additional information you provide makes this assessment all the more sure, if such is possible.  You absolutely can be confident that you did not get HIV from the exposure you have described and have no medical or scientific need for further testing.

This third response will now complete this thread.  Take care.  EWH
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