Dissident AIDS Database

Antibody testsUnreliabilityFalse positiveInterpretation
Laboratory diagnosis of human immunodeficiency virus infection.
 Proffitt MR, Yen-Lieberman B.
  "False-positive HIV ELISAs [also] occur because of human or technical errors associated with doing the tests"
  Inf Dis Clin North Am. 1993;7:203-191993
Report of a False-Positive HIV Test Result and the Potential Use of Additional Tests in Establishing HIV Serostatus.
 Mylonakis E et al.
  "The clinician must judge the test results within the context of other epidemiological and clinical information" [i.e. gay men and IV drug users are likely to be defined as positive based on this prejudice in the presence of ambiguous test results]... In the appropriate clinical setting, positive ELISA and WB test results in patients with a normal CD4 + count and CD4/ CD8 ratio and undetectable HIV-1 RNA should be questioned, repeated, or confirmed with supplemented testing..."
  Arch Intern Med. 2000 Aug 14/28;160:2386-8.2000
Protocol for Verifying Ambiguous HIV Test Results in Pregnant Women
 No author
  According to the experts cited in the article, "risk factors" should be taken into account and may even "sway a decision" about whether or not a woman is HIV positive and should begin toxic drug treatment during pregnancy. In practical terms, based on the same tests results, a woman considered "promiscuous," or who is a minority, or has used injection drugs is more likely to be told she is infected with HIV than a woman not claiming such risk factors.
  Reuters Health- November 10, 20002000
Apparent HIV-1 glyco-protein reactivity on Western Blot in uninfected blood donors.
 Healey DS, Bolton WV.
  This study assumed that the investigated samples were from non-HIV infected individuals. While we were unable to unequivocally prove this, samples were obtained from normal blood donors who signed a declaration form stating that they had not engaged in any HIV-related risk behaviour. Because these individuals were healthy enough to present for blood donation, it is unlikely that their indeterminant WB reactivities could have resulted from the loss of anti-core antibodies, which has been associated with late-stage AIDS...the use of WB interpretive criteria, such as those proposed by the World Health Organization [would] allow individuals reactive to two glycoprotein bands to be considered anti-HIV-1-seropositive, and would inappropriately classify 11 out of the 13 samples described in this study as anti-HIV-1-seropositive by the DB [Diagnostic Biotechnology] WB
  AIDS. 1993;7:655-8.1993
Manufacturer's notice
 Abbott Laboratories
  "Although for all clinical and public health applications of the EIA both the degree of risk for HIV-1 infection of the person studied and the degree of reactivity of the serum may be of value in interpreting the test, these correlations are imperfect. Therefore, in most settings it is appropriate to investigate repeatedly reactive specimens by additional more specific or supplemental tests"
  HIV/ELISA test packet insert (Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1. FUVAB FffVI EIA. Abbott Laboratories, 66-8805/R5, january 1997:5).1997