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A patient with MALT tells of false positive tests for HIV

 

MY STORY

My original posting to the nhl-MALT list group mentioned that I had what was described as a weak positive to HIV (negative to Hep A, B, C and syphilis) after a routine screening test on my blood. On much deeper analysis it was found to be a false positive since I am negative to P24 Antigen, one of the confirming tests they seem to do on HIV analysis.

I had found http://www.virusmyth.net/aids/data/cjtestfp.htm which lists a very large number of pre-existing conditions which can produce false positives. You may wish to approach the author of that site for permission, then reproduce the list on lymphomation.org (or just link to it). In my circumstances, I have positive Anti-Ro/SS-A and Antinuclear Antibody (ANA)
both of which relate to Sjogren's Syndrome. This is an autoimmune disorder. I also now know I am positive to lymphoma. So, from the list so far, I can tick off quite a few possible factors which would influence the HIV test and return a false positive. The scary part is that basic stuff like Flu can seem to have an influence as well as rheumatoid arthritis and many other
things, even tetanus vaccinations.

Two other people replied to my post, and have given their permission to be anonymously offered to you (they are quoted to you exactly per the wording they agreed), for you to consider.... the first offering is quite detailed and informative.

Regards, Graham

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CASE 1

I had the same and even more complex experience as yours. I was diagnosed in May 95 with Waldenstrom's Macroglobulinemia WM now also called Lymphoplasmacytic Lymphoma. Last December during a chemo treatment (Rituximab) I had some routinely blood tests and, I do not know why, an antibody syphilis test. The test resulted positive (TPPA superior or equal to 1/20480). 

Note that I am not a "Saint", but I am 62 old and I am sure not to have any reason to get this infection at least in the last 20 years!! Then my HM/Onc doc suggested to have another test at a dermatology division. I went there and they suggested to add a HIV test; agreeing on that I felt "dirty". A week later they gave me an answer about syphilis: VDRL test negative and asked me to wait other 7 days for the HIV test. The following week they said to me that the first HIV test (Ab ant HIV1 - IA Ag purified - resulted positive and the further tests they made:

- Ab anti sgp 120 of HIV1 (ENV1)
- Ab anti gp 41 of HIV1 (ENV1)
- Ab anti p 31 of HIV1 (POL)
- Ab anti p 24 of HIV1 (GAG)
- Ab anti p 17 of HIV1 (GAG)
- Ab anti sgp 105 of HIV2 (ENV2)
- Ab anti gp 36 of HIV2 (ENV2)

resulted negatives, so I did not have any AIDS!! 
Then my HM/Onc doc explain to me that probably the high number of IGM I have got in my blood (over 4000 per mg/dl) tend to associate in vitro to test reagents.
I read the article you linked in your email and I found at least the following factors that can be applied to me:

- Hypergammaglobulinemia (high levels of antibodies)
- False positive on other tests, including RPR (rapid plasma reagent) test for syphilis
- Tetanus vaccination (made a few months before)
- Malignant neoplasms (cancers)
- Haematologic malignant disorders/lymphoma


CASE 2

Quite a number of years ago....before i ever knew about sjogrens.... i was told i have hepatitis B..... since then i have had many test done...even at National Institutes of Health...and they say that i don't have hepatitis....or hiv....i was never told i had that...just the hepatitis.  I don't know if this will help you at all. but i know it had something to do with my case.....

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