Q and A


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?


  • 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:

The FAQ page on testing also has more information:

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


  1. Mary

    Am pregnant and I did the blood test ,the wrote non reactive beside the Retroviral screen but in the maternal record book ,where they’ve written HIV test ,they wrote 280 I don’t understand

  2. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Rommel,

    Please see the above post and Q’s 1 and 8 here:


  3. Rommel

    What does a non-reactive test result mean?

  4. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Abdul,

    Please see Q’s 1, 5 and 8 here:


  5. Abdul

    I don’t understand, I am non reactive how can my wives test was reactive.

  6. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Jacob,

    As the above post explains, a reactive result indicates that someone is positive. Has this result been confirmed by another test?

  7. Jacob

    my wife was told that the results are reactive

  8. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Ayo,

    It sounds like you need to have your test confirmed. If the clinic where you want won’t do this, please go to another.

    For more info on testing, please see Q1 here:


    If you are positive, please get back in touch with us.

  9. ayo

    I got tested for HIV recently and I was told that my HIV determination test is positive but they insisted that I am HIV negative. Am confused

  10. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Ayo,

    Please see Q1 here:


    If you aren’t happy with what you’ve been told, I suggest that you try another clinic. Its important that you have your test confirmed.

    If you are positive, please do contact us.