HIV Testing and Diagnosis

  • Author: Peter Leone, MD (More Info)
  • Editors in Chief: Daniel R. Kuritzkes, MD; Joseph J. Eron, Jr., MD
  • Last Reviewed: 1/9/18 (What's New)


  • AHI is defined as the period after acquisition when there are detectable levels of HIV-1 RNA in blood while HIV antibody tests are negative or indeterminate
  • During AHI, high levels of HIV-1 RNA in blood and genital secretions can increase transmission risk during high-risk activity and may be responsible for 14% to 50% of all transmission events[Pilcher 2007; Pilcher 2004; Xiridou 2004; Yerly 2001; Pao 2005; Brenner 2008]
  • An estimated 40% to 90% of individuals who acquire HIV develop symptoms consistent with an acute retroviral syndrome
    • Diagnostic Approaches for Patients With Acute Retroviral Syndrome and/or Those With Recent High-Risk Exposure but Negative or Indeterminate HIV Serologic Tests

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