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Ask Dr. D. Love Your Own Question
Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: HIV and AIDS
Satisfied Customers: 18541
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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How often should I get tested for HIV//AIDS? Is there an

Customer Question

How often should I get tested for HIV//AIDS? Is there an incubation period where testing won't find it?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: HIV and AIDS
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 4 months ago.

Hello from JustAnswer. This is Dr. Love.

The CDC recommends regular testing for all adults, even adults that only engage in low risk or protected intercourse. For most people, annual testing is appropriate. However, for people that regularly engage in higher risk sexual activity, particularly men that have sex with men, testing every 3-6 months would be appropriate. People that are certain that they are in a mutually monogamous relationship may opt out of routine testing.

There is a window period during which the test cannot detect HIV, but that does not alter the above recommended regular testing frequency. It can take up to 12 weeks/3 months for the HIV test to be accurate, although the HIV test will detect about 95% of cases within 4 weeks. But this window period was considered when the CDC made the recommendation for routine testing. The window period is only a consideration when we have to perform testing after a specific exposure, including when PEP is prescribed.

If I can provide any additional information, please let me know.

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 4 months ago.

Please let me know if I can provide any further assistance.