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Question about PrEP and testing

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  • Question about PrEP and testing

    Hi, Doctors. I'm not sure if I'm in the right forum but I was a PrEP user before and my question has something to do with it. I really hope you can help me with my question.

    The last time I had receptive vaginal sex was in June. 27 days after that, I tested non-reactive on an Ag/Ab test. I also started PrEP (the pill that's taken everyday to prevent transmission in case of a risky situation). I also continuously got tested. I get tested almost every 2-3 weeks. All tests are Ag/Ab and all are non-reactive. When getting tested, I try to see if the nurse gets a new needle before drawing my blood. But on October 16, I had my blood drawn for a test and I did not see if the nurse used a new needle.

    On October 30, I decided to stop PrEP since I wasn't sexually active. Again, the last time I had a sexual encounter was in June.

    I continously got tested. The last test that I had was last December 28. Again, I also did not see the nurse opening a new needle during the blood draw. This was more than 6 months after my last sexual encounter, 10 weeks after the October 16 blood draw where I did not see a new needle being opened, and 8 weeks after I stopped PrEP.

    About 10 days after the December 28 blood draw, I started having headaches, muscle aches, and red spots on my chest. These continued for several days. Until on Day 14, I started feeling under the weather. This continued until Day 16. Aside from that, my chest has been really red with red spots as well.

    So my questions are these:
    Can you still say that hospitals/clinics do not reuse needles and that this is not a risk? Note that everything I'm feeling is not in my head. I have been feeling under the weather, I have had muscle aches and headaches, and I have had redness in my chest. The only 2 situations that I can think of are the blood draws on October 16 and December 28 where I did not see new needles being opened by the nurses.

  • #2
    Hi January.01,
    If you are referring to hospitals and clinics in Singapore, I can safely say yes, both in private and public hospitals and clinics, it is protocol NOT to reuse needles. Needles are strictly sterile, single use, and discarded after.

    There are other possible causes aside from HIV that may account for your symptoms - it is hard to say without physically evaluating you. You are welcome to come by our clinics should you be keen for that.


    • #3
      Thank you for your response, Doctor.

      I am actually not from Singapore, but I did go to the bigger hospitals in the country from where I'm from.

      Could it just be coincidence that I'm experiencing these things a week or 2 after my last blood draw, and these have nothing to do with needles being reused?

      Is it safe to say that the sexual activity last June has nothing to with what I'm experiencing? I had an Ag/Ab test 27 days after that, and then started PrEP right after. Was the 27 day test enough? If it wasn't, could the PrEP have caused the succeeding tests to become non-reactive? I have stopped PrEP and have had another test 2 months after stopping. Is that enough time to get a test with conclusive results?

      Lastly, the blood draw last October 16 while I was on PrEP. Like you said, it is highly unlikely for needles to be reused. But just to satisfy my curiousity, if I stopped PrEP on October 30 and had a test on December 28, will those results be conclusive? That's 10 weeks after the blood draw where I didn't see a new needle being opened and 8 weeks after I stopped PrEP.

      Thank you in advance and looking forward to your response, Doctor. I appreciate it.


      • #4
        An additonal question, Doctor. I had a full STD panel and Hep B test after the incident in June and as part of the regular testing while on PrEP. This does not include HSV test though. Can HSV cause delay in detection in an Ag/Ab test. Again, I did not get tested for HSV but I was wondering if that could be a factor in delayed detection in an Ag/Ab test.

        Thank you again in advance for your response.


        • #5
          Hello I’m curious . Is it possible that a person who take the ARV medicine for HIV will long last? For how many years ?