I've been having health issues recently (fatigue/bad GERD) so I've been to my doctor quite a bit in the past year. At the end of September, my doc ran a Hep C test and to my shock and dismay it was reactive (s c/o 1.24). I had a follow up RNA test about a week later which showed Undetected.
My doc wanted to see if I could get a negative antibody test, so she ran it again (same test manufacturer) last week - still reactive, now at 1.62, with an RNA test on the same sample - still Undetected.
I am so stressed and confused. My liver enzymes have always shown as normal, with the exception of one time in the summer that my ALT was elevated by only one point. (Although I know normal enzymes don't mean much.) I am low risk - no unprotected sex, no tattoos or drug use ever, no blood transfusions. I do have some body piercings and have had my nails done, although I have always gone to places that sterilize in front of me. I have been hospitalized in the past year and had surgery in June to remove my gallbladder but those would be my only risks.
I feel like I am just waiting for the RNA test to become positive. I have read RNA levels can fluctuate greatly even by the day, so how will I ever know that I for sure do not have Hep C (or had it and cleared it) and am not just having the RNA run "on the wrong day" so to speak? The RIBA is no longer available. Is there a time frame after which RNA absolutely becomes positive? Also, does my slightly increased antibody level over time mean it's not a false positive?
Does anyone know other infections that might cause a cross-reactive result with the Hep C test, or could my gallbladder removal cause irregular test results?
I'm so sorry for all the questions - I feel so sad. I am only in my twenties and have not yet had the opportunity for marriage or children, and now I feel like I never will because I don't want to put someone else at risk.