- Health

HIV Test Solutions You Can Count On

In general, in self-diagnostic tests of HIV, the probability that a positive result will be obtained in the test for an HIV-infected subject (sensitivity values) is greater than 99.5% while the probability that a negative result is obtained for a healthy subject (specificity) is around 99.9% provided that the three-month “window period” has been respected.

According to the prospectus of the test that has been marketed in Canada, the sensitivity in this case is 100% with a confidence interval between 99.1% and 100%, that is, no false ones were observed negative in people with HIV. Specificity is 99.8% with a confidence interval between 99.5 and 100%, that is, 0.2% of people not infected with HIV obtained a false positive.

What does a negative result mean?

If the result is negative, it means that the self-test did not detect antibodies to HIV-1 and HIV-2. If the test has been carried out after three months without risky behavior, it means that the person is not infected. If this “window period” has not passed, the person may be infected with HIV and the test must be repeated. A negative result does not imply that it is not necessary to continue using a condom during sexual intercourse to avoid other infections. The use of the hiv test is important there.

What if the result is inconclusive?

If the result obtained is not interpretable, it is advisable to repeat the test to obtain a negative or positive result.

What does it mean if the test result is positive?

The result of a self-diagnostic test is an interim result and has to be confirmed by laboratory tests. For this, the person who obtains this result should go to a health center to be able to carry out the appropriate confirmation tests, and if pertinent, receive the necessary medical advice on the new state of health. The possibility of obtaining a false positive, as counted in point 4, is 0.2%.

Why should I get tested?

An early diagnosis of HIV infection gives the affected person access to medicines that will improve their quality of life and also helps to reduce the risk of transmission to other people. The treatments are highly effective and allow life expectancy and quality to be similar to that of the general population, but to use them you must first diagnose the disease according to the report by health experts.

Can I buy the test online?

Health explains that self-diagnostic health products are sold exclusively through pharmacy offices but adds that, by eliminating the prescription requirement, pharmacies will be able to make them available through the internet.

What is this test not for?

Health includes this question in the document that you have prepared with frequently asked questions. The self-diagnostic test, he points out, is  not used to detect a possible HIV infection immediately after having a risky sexual relationship, nor to decide whether to use a condom in a sexual relationship, nor to detect other sexually transmitted diseases, such as hepatitis, syphilis, gonorrhea or chlamydia or to make changes in the treatment of a person already diagnosed.