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Hepatitis C test result??

I am a health care practitioner and used to have blood exposure to a patient with acute hepatitis.

I've done several screening tests and that include hepatitis C.

9 weeks post exposure, both anti HCV and HCV Qualitative PCR are not detected. Do you think I require further testing or I am technically "free" from Hepatitis C?
3 Responses
683231 tn?1467323017
You should ask your doctor we here are a community of patients and cannot diagnose any medical conditions.

You said the patient had acute hepatitis I assume the patient had acute hepatitis c is that correct?

Did you have an exposure of blood to blood contact for example an accidental needle stick?

If you had the HCV RNA by PCR my understanding as a lay person is that would be conclusive in a matter of days so if that was Not Detected then you likely do have hep c but you should ask the physician who ordered the tests.

You are a medical professional I am a machinist by trade a blue collar worker and have had no medical training the same as most of us here.

This is as the header says:
"A community of people with Hepatitis C to guide and support your health journey. Ask a question, join a conversation, share experiences: diagnosis, current treatments, side effects, research studies, and clinical trials."

We are primarily a support group for those already diagnosed by a doctor with known hep c.

Good luck
2 Comments
9 weeks isnt enough for this smart virus, you may have to try pcr after 6 months to be very sure , have seen a case she was antibody negative  for 1 year and pcr negative  for 4 months
We are not talking about the antibody test which can in the case of a patient who is immune compromised can take up to six months to be sure if a negative antibody test. We are speaking about the HCV RNA by PCR test which tests for the virus itself not nearly antibodies to the virus.
18601474 tn?1466188088
As a healthcare worker, you may already know much of this, but here is a guide to Hep C testing that may help you make sense of where you are in the process.
http://www.medhelp.org/hepatitis-c/articles/Diagnosing-Hepatitis-C/2273
Avatar universal
@flyinlynn What do you mean? Do I have hepatitis c or not? This test was personally ordered by me. I am anxious the moment I get this blood contact with a patient. To specifically clarified, I am not yet a fully registered health practitioner, so my knowledge is still limited. So you could call myself a "layman" as well.

From what I've read, this test detects a very low amount of virus (5-10 IU/ml) at a matter of very short duration since the exposure (1-2 weeks according to the CDC). So I thought it could be "conclusive" if I requested the test 9 weeks post exposure.

But now someone comes and tell me that you can be PCR negative for months (4 months??), which I find hard to swallow. The main reason due to the high cost of this test alone. The second reason is that, this test could miss the "undetectable" amount of virus even though I was 9 weeks post exposure plus I was antibody-negative as well.

I don't know what should I do right now. I was very worried. This could affect my life and my whole carrier.

5 Comments
*career
That person was not correct about PCR testing

Got this from the VA Hep c website looks like 2 weeks

HCV RNA (hepatitis C virus ribonucleic acid) tests

HCV RNA (hepatitis C virus ribonucleic acid) tests indicate presence of viremia, using target amplification techniques. These tests can detect virus within 1-2 weeks following exposure.(4)

You are still a medical person compared to me as I said I am a machinist a blue collar worker.

I cannot diagnose you that is up to a doctor not a mechanic.

But just to add even if you did have hep c it is now almost entirely curable. You can still do your same job even if infected many people do.

Did have a needle stick involving a patient with hep c? Did you have a blood to blood exposure? Hep c requires blood to blood contact for transmission.
Why do you not ask a doctor to explain your results?
Yes, I have blood exposure to an open wound on my hand. Not a needle stick to be exact. The chances to contract this disease are still there though it is very low. The only way to find out is to get tested.

Thanks for your answer and help. I think I'll refer this to my doctor. Much appreciated.
Just so you know the odds of transmission from a needle stick  involving a patient with known hep C are about 1.8% so yours would be appreciably lower. Also was your wound open and wearing or scabbed over.  If you're one was not open wet and weeping the odds of transmission are extremely low
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