There are two basic types of HIV testing, both of which can done easily by drawing blood once and submitting to the lab.
HIV Antibody Test with Confirmation
At A Glance:
This test is the most common and recommended for HIV testing. It is regarded as the “gold standard” of testing and yields a 99.5% level of accuracy. It is important to remember that finding antibodies after seroconversion, which is what this test does, is not intended for people who have recently been exposed to HIV.
What You Need To Know:
In order for this test to yield a positive result, the body must have had enough time to produce antibodies to be detected by the test. The time necessary for the creation of antibodies may vary, and it may take up to three months or longer for one’s body to create enough to be detected by the test. This is why the test may yield false negatives if the body has not created enough antibodies yet. It is precisely for this reason that repeat testing is essential. Repeating the HIV Antibody Test at least three months after it was initially done is the best way of confirming that your body is indeed free of HIV.
There is no cure for HIV, but it can be treated:
There were very few drugs for HIV treatment and fending off infection when HIV was first discovered. But since that time, HIV treatment has come a long way and is still advancing. There is still not a cure for HIV or AIDS, but now, having this virus does not mean a death sentence.
There is a class of drugs (anti-retroviral medications) that help tremendously by extending the quality of life in sufferers and slowing HIV’s growth in the body.
What is “Confirmation”?
For all positive results, there is an additional test performed to confirm the initial positive outcome. This test is done with blood from the initial draw and at no additional cost, but it helps confirm that the results are accurate.
Is this a blood test or urine test?
A blood test is need for the HIV Antibody Test. There will not be any painful swabbing or unnecessary undressing required for this test.