Being active sexually is not only accompanied by fun but also fears of contracting HIV/AIDS and many are the times people live with fears for close to six months before their doctors or clinicians can either declare them HIV positive or negative.

Unknown to many, it is possible to test for HIV presence in the blood within ten to thirty-three days after exposure through use of complicated and sophisticated methods.

Methods of HIV Testing.

In the world, there a three accredited methods of testing HIV but only one technique is largely used in all the states. The type of the method to use varies with urgency of the test, availability of equipment’s and resources, and purpose of the test. The three globally methods of testing HIV are:

  • Nucleic Acids Test
  • Antigen-Antibody Test
  • Antibody Test

Nucleic Acids Test is the most complex of all and is the only method that can detect HIV in the blood after ten days of exposure. The technique involves detection of genetic materials of the virus in the blood. This technique also involves quantification of the viral load in the blood.

Antigen Antibody Test is the most commonly used technique and involve screening for presence of antibody antigen reactions in the blood. Antigens can be any part of a foreign material in the body and for HIV, the antigen is a protein referred to as P24. Antibodies are immune components (proteins) released by the body to counter react the HIV antigen.

HIV antibody test screens for antibodies from the blood. Antibodies in the blood occur as a counter reaction to HIV infection.

Anyone who has been recently predisposed to HIV is encourage to take HIV nucleic acid test to determine whether there are traces of the virus or its genetic materials in the body. The most thrilling thing about this test and why those who are sexually active have a soft spot for it is because one can tell whether they are infected or not within ten days after being predisposed.

Sometimes doctors and clinicians can recommend Nucleic Acid test if:

  • One has been recently predisposed.
  • Early symptoms of HIV start manifesting.
  • Antigen Antibody test result to either false positive or false negative.
  • They want to analyze effectiveness of HIV treatment by quantifying the quantity of viruses in the blood.

The Nucleic Acid Test gives a reprieve to those who mostly engage in sexual intercourse without using any means of protection and putting them at risk of contracting the virus. Anyone who is predisposed to the virus develops worries and stress until after six months where antigen antibody test declares them positive or negative of HIV.

Despite the capacity of the test to screen for HIV viral particles or genetic material segments, the use of the technique is limited in developing countries because of the cost for carrying out a single test, availability of equipment and skills to do such procedures.



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