“Now, keep in mind that the antibodies to HIV will take anywhere from six weeks to six months to appear. So a negative HIV test is really only negative if your last unprotected sexual experience happened more than six months ago,” Ross has written on her website.
“So if you or your partner test negative, check the timeline before you celebrate, and before you decide to stop using condoms!”
The FDA also has warned that there is a risk of false negative results – especially if HIV was contracted within three months before the test – and the test must be confirmed by follow-up testing in a medical laboratory.
The CDC recommends that all adolescents and adults get tested for HIV at least once as a routine part of medical care, regardless of their risk. Those at higher risk for HIV, including those with multiple or HIV-infected partners or people who inject drugs, should get tested at least once a year.
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