HomeAnswersInternal MedicinehivDo the HIV antibodies once formed persist for life?

Once infected, will HIV antibodies be present in the blood forever?


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Published At January 5, 2022
Reviewed AtSeptember 16, 2022

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

Do the HIV antibodies once formed persist for life? To be more precise, if once created, can we see HIV antibodies inside blood forever? And also, no matter how many times the exposure happens, does the blood test pick up the first infection, or does the blood test only go for the recent disease? Please advise.


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I can understand your concern. HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) antibodies are seen only when the patient has an HIV infection. And HIV infection is not curable. So you can say HIV antibodies are lifelong, like HIV. Blood tests detect either HIV-1, HIV-2 virus, or its antibodies. Since this is a lifelong infection, it is difficult to tell whether the positive test is from the first infection or subsequent infection. I hope I have solved your query. I hope this helps.

Thank you.

Patient's Query

Thank you doctor. I understood from you that HIV antibodies are for life long. My other doubt was exposure happened eight years before and has caused the infection, and the second exposure was two months before and may or may not have caused an infection. If you take the test now, does the test pick up the first infection, which happened eight years before, or the second infection, i.e., second exposure detection only? Can you please help?


Welcome back to icliniq.com.

No, this is not true. The test can not differentiate between two infections. I hope I have solved your query. I will be happy to help you further.

Thank you.

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

Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar
Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar

Pulmonology (Asthma Doctors)

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