HIV. Three letters that can evoke a multitude of memories and fears. But the images of HIV infection and AIDS have changed. The good news is that what used to be a deadly disease has become a treatable infection. HIV is a virus that attacks and weakens the human immune system. Hence the name human immunodeficiency virus.
We clear up prejudices and stigmas and give you some hard facts about HIV:
💡 HIV is not AIDS (erroneously, "HIV tests" are also often called "AIDS tests")
💡 HIV medications prevent the outbreak of AIDS
💡 With HIV therapy, a good life with almost normal life expectancy is possible
💡 People with HIV infection and an undetectable viral load on therapy cannot transmit the virus sexually
There are symptoms that may indicate an HIV infection:
Swelling of the lymph nodes
Fatigue and listlessness
After a short time, these symptoms subside again and a longer symptom-free period follows. But it is precisely during this time that the HI virus weakens the body. Therefore, be sure to talk to a doctor if you have any symptoms.
Sex is beautiful and it should stay that way! That's why have made it our mission to give you more security in your sex life on a regular base.
Especially if you enjoy an exciting love life with different partners, it is important that you get tested for HIV regularly. We advise regular HIV testing at:
Men having sex with men
Intravenous drug use
HIV PreP users
💡 Attention: If you have had a concrete risk of HIV transmission, ask about PEP. This should be started as soon as possible after a risk contact. Preferably within the first 48 hours. You can find all the information about this at the Deutsche Aidshilfe on Safer Sex Accident/Pep.
If symptoms are present, the costs are usually covered by the health insurance. However, the visit to a doctor is not anonymous and the test result will be recorded in your medical file.
You can find these in many larger cities and towns and of course in almost every major city. The offers are not always free of charge and are usually between 10.00 € to 30.00 €. It is best to find out about the offer and the possible costs on the respective website.
The result can usually be read at home 30 minutes after the blood sample has been taken. But be careful: mistakes can be made by laypersons when carrying out and reading the test. Be sure to read the instructions beforehand. Most rapid tests are not conclusive until 12 weeks after a risk of transmission.
With us, you can do your test at home and send your samples to a lab. You will receive an explanation about the use of medically trained staff by phone before your first test kit. The evaluation of your samples in the laboratory is done according to the latest standards. If the result is positive or reactive, we will be there for you and tell you what to do next.
For a reliable result from an HIV test in the laboratory, the risk situation should have occurred at least six weeks previously (diagnostic window). For rapid HIV tests, this is even at least twelve weeks.
Antibody test: Here, your blood is tested to see whether it has formed antibodies against the HI virus. However, the test only works reliably 12 weeks after a risk contact.
Antigen antibody test: This is considered the standard test in German laboratories. We also work with this test at s.a.m health. The blood is analyzed for the presence of the HI virus. With the test, we can obtain reliable results 6 weeks after the risk contact.
HIV PCR test: This test allows the detection of HI viruses directly in the blood. It is usually used in ongoing HIV therapy.
Don't panic - we are here for you. First of all, it is important to know that there is a difference between a reactive and a positive result. A reactive test result is frightening at first, but basically it only means that a test indicates the presence of the virus.
However, this must first be confirmed by a second laboratory test.
If the result is positive, our counselors will help you find a specialized HIV doctor. Thanks to suitable therapies, you can continue to have a fulfilling sex life with HIV.
Reporting obligation: Only a confirmed HIV diagnosis is reportable. But it is reported to the Robert Koch Institute without mentioning the name.