How Can I know If I Get HIV?

Q:

How can I know if I get HIV?

A:

HIV is usually diagnosed by testing your blood or saliva for the presence of antibodies to the virus.

There are several kinds of HIV tests. Most tests check your blood for the HIV antibodies, or a mixture of antibodies and antigens. When you are exposed to HIV, your immune system makes antibodies to the virus. It takes about 3-12 weeks for your body to make enough antibodies to appear on a test.

Antigens are the part of the virus that antibodies react to. Because antigens appear faster than antibodies, a test that looks for both antigens and antibodies can detect HIV sooner, usually about 2-6 weeks after a possible exposure.

If your first test result is positive, you will need a confirmation test.

 

Key words: aids diagnosis; do you get aids;

 

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* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.