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HIV / HCV interactions and window period

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  • HIV / HCV interactions and window period

    Hi Doctor,
    If one gets infected with both HIV and Hepatitis C, does the window period for HIV increase? Does the interaction between the two viruses affect the window period?
    i got tested last week (5th week after PEP, and 11 weeks after a first blood exposure). The Ag/Ab test was negative using fourth generation Elisa test. And HIV 1 pcr was negative.
    I am worried about HIV 2 and Hepatitis C. Do you think these tests are conclusive to rule out HIV 2, or should I test again (that is if the window period would be affected if I had the two viruses).

    Best regards,

  • #2
    Hi CMK,

    There is a theoretical risk that there is delayed sero-conversion with HIV and Hepatitis C co-infection. If you are worried about Hepatitis C, go get tested. If it's negative, then there is no delay sero-conversion

    As for HIV2, as mentioned it is rare out of sub-saharan Africa. The 4th Generation Ab/Ag should have picked that up as well.



    • #3
      Dear Doctor, thank you for your response.
      I had a Hepatitis C test in the 11th week after exposure. It was negative, but my fear that some people do not produce antibodies till 6 months after infection is what scares me. (These 11 weeks include the time that I was taking PEP).

      Yes, HIV 2 is rare here in Germany but about 100 - 200 people in the country have it. My worry was the delay might not show HIV 2 in the test I did five weeks post pep.. which was about 11 weeks since that first exposure. But it’s good to know that the test could have picked that infection, if it were there.

      best regards,
      Last edited by CMK; 09-21-2020, 02:47 PM.