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Are serum card tests for HIV conclusive?


The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

iCliniq medical review team

Published At February 6, 2023
Reviewed AtOctober 12, 2023

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

I had protected sex, and the serum card test of HIV tested negative. Is it conclusive? I was diagnosed with hydrocele and a fever, and the doctor prescribed me antibiotics. He also advised me about CBC(Complete Blood Count). CBC result shows high TLC. Is it due to an infection of the hydrocele? Do the antibiotics have any effect on TLC (Total Lung Capacity)? In fear I took the ELISA (Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay) test, and it was negative. No fever or other symptoms. Awaiting urine culture; urine routine is normal.

Kindly advice.

Hi, Welcome to icliniq.com.

I understand your concern. The answers to your questions are: Suppose it was protected sex, and the condom was used consistently and correctly. In that case, the risk of acquiring HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) and other STIs (sexually transmitted infections) is nonexistent. Unprotected oral exposure carries a negligible to low risk of acquisition of HIV, especially in the circumstances if there is a bleeding ulcer, gums, or active local infection. Subsequent negative test results will be considered conclusive only if there is no unprotected further exposure in the last three months. High TLC could be due to local infection or even hydrocele. Yes, antibiotics can decrease the counts if they were raised during infection. If your repeat test is negative and there has been no exposure in the last three months, the result will be considered conclusive.

Best wishes.

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

Thank you for the reply.

My TLC has increased due to antibiotics. No sexual encounter after that. Will hydrocele go away on its own? Any worry.

Kindly advice.


Welcome back to icliniq.com.

TLC (total leukocyte count) increases during infection. Antibiotics, given for infection, will let it decline.

For hydrocele, surgery is generally required.

Please let me know your present complaints or symptoms so that appropriate treatment could be advised.

Best wishes.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Ravinder K. Sachdeva
Dr. Ravinder K. Sachdeva

HIV/AIDS specialist

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