HIV / P24 ANTIGEN
This test is combined and is done WITHOUT AN APPOINTMENT. It consists of a small prick on the finger and the result is obtained in 20 minutes. This type of analysis requires a 3-week window period.
The technique we use analyzes both the detection of HIV Antibodies and the presence of the P24 Antigen.
Currently we have the possibility of performing a high sensitivity and specificity test without having to wait 3 weeks after risk exposure, the Polymerase Chain Reaction or PCR.:
– 7 days of risk exposure since it is a molecular biology technique
– Results in 90 minutes, being able to be provided by email in case of not being able to wait in consultation.
Our doctor will solve any doubts you may have about a possible contagion or symptoms that you present.
Do not hesitate to take the test and ensure your health and that of those around you. Total confidentiality.
HIV P24 antigen
The P24 antigen is a viral protein that is characteristically elevated at the beginning of HIV infection, when the body has not yet had time to react and develop antibodies.
This test serves as a screen for recent HIV infection and exposure. In our case, we performed the rapid test combined with HIV antibodies and P24 antigen; This test increases the probability of detecting HIV infection early after possible exposure.
This test can be carried out when 3 weeks have elapsed from the date of exposure or the risk relationship.
Any results obtained from said test must be reconfirmed after 3 months of the window period.
Detection of HIV antibodies
HIV antibodies can be detected after a 3-month window period has elapsed since the risk exposure or relationship for any clinical test to achieve the highest possible reliability.
According to the WHO: “HIV can be transmitted through vaginal, anal or oral sex with an infected person, the transfusion of contaminated blood or the shared use of needles, syringes or other sharp instruments. Likewise, it can be transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding “
What is HIV and how is it transmitted?
AIDS means ‘acquired immunodeficiency syndrome‘ and it is a disease that destroys the immune system, the body’s defenses, produced by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
Being infected with HIV is not the same as having AIDS. There are people who can have the virus and go for many years without having symptoms of the disease, feeling well and looking good. These people are HIV positive, they do not have AIDS, but they can transmit the virus to other people.
What happens when you get infected with HIV?
Once inside cells, the virus can fall asleep for long periods of time, although it sometimes multiplies and can destroy cells. In this way, the immune system loses the ability to defend itself against infections caused by other germs and also the ability to destroy abnormal cells that are produced in our body. This fact facilitates the appearance of diseases that characterize AIDS:
- Opportunists: occur when the immune system is affected.
- Certain types of cancers.
- Neurological disorders: they cause serious alterations in consciousness up to the point of dementia.
The virus can be transmitted as long as a sufficient amount of blood, semen, vaginal discharge, or breast milk reaches the healthy person from the infected person.
Not everyone has the same facility to become infected: a good state of health, which includes correct nutrition and an adequate emotional balance, favors general resistance to infections.
The mechanisms of HIV transmission are:
- Transmission by blood: the risk of infection is very high when needles, syringes and other objects contaminated by the use of injected drugs are shared. In this case, the amount of blood left in these utensils may be enough to transmit the virus, which is even easier than when they are shared many times. Punctures with contaminated syringes and accidental cuts also pose a risk to healthcare personnel. Since 1986, blood transfusions, organ transplants and artificial insemination have been healthily controlled and the risk of contagion through these routes is practically nil. Other low-risk situations, but with the possibility that the virus can be transmitted in the general population, are:
- When there is penetrating contact (puncture or cut) with an object that has been contaminated with blood from an infected person. This can happen when single-use utensils are not used or when these utensils have not been properly sterilized, such as when putting a piercing on any part of the body, piercing the earlobes, when getting tattoos, electric hair removal and pricking with a syringe or needle of unknown origin.
- When sharing household objects that can be stained with blood, such as toothbrushes, blades and other utensils for personal use (although for hygiene reasons they should never be shared). The fact of not sharing these types of objects also prevents blood transmission of other infections, such as hepatitis B and C and herpes.
- Sexual transmission: penetrative sex without a condom with infected people, both of the same and different sex, carries a risk of contagion. Not all forms of sexual intercourse have the same risk: those of anal or vaginal penetration without a condom carry a high risk, while in relations that involve oral contact with the genital organs the risk of contagion is lower (it does not mean that this is non-existent). Finally, in non-penetrative relationships there is no risk of contagion (see table below). The existence of other sexually transmitted infections facilitates the transmission of HIV.
|High risk||– Receptive anal penetration without a condom (person penetrated in sexual intercourse)
– Receptive vaginal penetration without a condom (person penetrated in sexual intercourse)
– Insertive anal penetration without a condom (person who enters sexual intercourse)
– Insertive vaginal penetration without a condom (person who enters sexual intercourse)
|Low risk, but possible||
– Fellatio (orogenital contact with a man) without a condom and with ejaculation in the mouth
|Risk free||– Wet kisses (from mouth to mouth)
– Mutual masturbation
– Caresses and massages
– Kiss or lick the body
However, in high-risk sexual practices, it must be taken into account that:
- The risk of HIV infection is higher with anal penetration than vaginal penetration.
- In all penetrative sex, whether anal, vaginal and oral (fellatio), the risk is theoretically higher for the person penetrated or recipient than for the person penetrating.
- When there are lesions in the mucosa, the risk increases. For this reason, when a person has other sexually transmitted diseases (gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes, among others), the risk of HIV infection increases.
- With oral stimulation of the female genitalia, the risk of HIV infection is greatly increased if the infected woman is menstruating.
- Perinatal transmission (from mother to baby) is one of the three main mechanisms of infection. When a pregnant woman is infected with HIV there is a risk that it can be transmitted to her child during pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding. The probability that this transmission occurs is between 20 and 25% in the case of not taking any therapeutic measure.
Transmission of the HIV virus is NOT caused by:
- Share the job
- Share a room
- Travel in the same vehicle
- Using public toilets
- Living in the same house
- Sharing food at the same table
- Embrace each other
- Give kisses
- Share the class in the same school
- Bathing in a public pool
- Wear the same clothes
- Share pencil, toys, etc.
- Being bitten by a mosquito or any other insect
- Donate blood
We remember that HIV:
- It is very little resistant to environmental conditions
- It does not spread by air
- It is not transmitted through the digestive tract
- It is destroyed with heat, with detergents, with bleach, with alcohol, etc.
- If we think about it, the risk of infection is limited to a few types of contacts, which generally occur voluntarily.
Source: Generalitat de Catalunya (gencat.cat)