WHAT IS HIV?
HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It is the virus that can cause AIDS, if not treated. However current treatments for HIV prevent this from happening in most people.
WHAT IS THE HIV ANTIBODY TEST?
It is a blood test, looking for HIV antibodies. Antibodies are produced by the body in response to infection. If you have HIV, then HIV antibodies will be present in your blood. It can take up to 6 weeks for HIV antibodies to develop after exposure to HIV. This is called the ‘Window Period’
If your HIV test is negative, and more than 6 weeks has passed since your last risk (eg unprotected sex), you are HIV negative and no further testing is required.
WHAT IS AN INCONCLUSIVE HIV RESULT?
Occasionally, a result is neither positive nor negative. This is called an inconclusive HIV result. The HIV blood test will need repeating and will subsequently be found to be either negative or positive.
A person with an inconclusive result with a recent high-risk exposure may be in the window period of infection. For people with low HIV risk, inconclusive HIV results are often false positive results. Factors such as pregnancy, blood transfusions, viral infections, or autoimmune disease may be a factor in inconclusive HIV results.
All inconclusive HIV test results need repeating. At your review appointment, your doctor or nurse, will arrange for this repeat test. A person with an inconclusive HIV result is often later found to be HIV negative. But because an inconclusive result can also occur in very early HIV infection, everyone who has an inconclusive HIV results needs further tests.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I HAVE AN INCONCLUSIVE HIV RESULT?
You will need a repeat HIV test.The doctor or nurse giving you this result, will provide you with further information and counselling as needed.
If you have further questions, please call the our Information and Results Line on 03 93416200
Free Call: 1800 032 017
This fact sheet is designed to provide you with information on HIV Antibody Test -inconclusive results. It is not intended to replace the need for a consultation with your doctor. All clients are strongly advised to check with their doctor about any specific questions or concerns they may have. Every effort has been taken to ensure that the information in this pamphlet is correct at the time of printing.
Last Updated: November 2017