When is rapid HIV testing indicated for pregnant women?

Updated: Apr 02, 2019
  • Author: Ashley T Peterson, MD; Chief Editor: Ronald M Ramus, MD  more...
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For women who present in labor and have not had prenatal testing, rapid testing should be offered. Unlike the ELISA, the rapid HIV test is a blood or saliva antibody test and results are usually available within an hour. The rapid test is reported to have a high negative predictive value (100%) and to be highly sensitive and specific (approaching 100%); however, the positive predictive value in pregnancy varies from 44-100%. [4] Patients who test positive in labor by ELISA should be treated as HIV positive until confirmatory results are available.

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