Q and A

Question

What do reactive negative/non-reactive results mean?

My ex had a rapid test and the results on the paper was reactive negative/non-reactive. He told me that the doctor said the result was positive. I googled and on your feedbacks say that it is negative – I am confused and scared now. Can you please clarify this for me?

Answer

  • A non-reactive result means HIV negative.
  • A reactive result means you might be HIV positive.  A second test is needed to confirm the results
  • An indeterminate results mean the test results was unclear and needs another test.

There is no such thing as a reactive negative result. This might be a communication error from the test centre. Please contact the testing clinic for clarification.

Please see Q8 at this link:
http://i-base.info/qa/what-are-the-most-asked-questions

The FAQ page on testing also has more information:
http://i-base.info/qa/factsheets/hiv-transmission-and-testing

Note: This answer was updated in January 2018 from a question first posted online in November 2011.

64 comments

  1. Simon Collins

    DISCUSSION ON THIS POST IS NOW CLOSED.

    Please use this link to ask a new question.
    http://i-base.info/qa/ask-a-question

    Please note that i-Base no longer answer questions about HIV testing or HIV transmission.

  2. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Hilda,

    Please see Q’s 1 and 8 here:

    http://i-base.info/qa/what-are-the-most-asked-questions

  3. Hilda

    I have an hiv text and results comes like response first and second that’s 280 and I don’t understand it

  4. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Mary,

    What non-reactive is is discussed above. I can’t comment on the 280 figure, therefore you should talk to your nurse.