What Does It Mean When Preliminary Test Results In Inconclusive?


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Monica Stott answered
  • The meaning of inconclusive test results
Inconclusive test results will usually relate to test results from a medical examination where samples have been sent to a lab and the patient will await the results. If the test comes back as 'inconclusive' it usually means that there was not enough of a particular sample to test or to make an accurate diagnosis.

The patient will usually be asked to return to their GP or hospital for further tests in the hope that the doctors can provide a great sample for testing. This can be extremely frustrating for the patient; particularly if they are awaiting important results which could potentially affect their whole life.

The doctors understand how frustrating this can be and will usually do their best to book another appointment as quickly as possible. If the results are needed quickly, they may even request them to be analyzed as priority.

If you have had a test which came back 'inconclusive' you should not worry or presume that it was positive because it does not necessarily mean this is the case.

  •   Types of tests with the possibility of this result

Many tests that people find come back as inconclusive are home HIV kits. This can be extremely worrying for people. It is best to go to your GP or a testing drop in centre where a properly trained expert can take a blood sample for the test and ensure there is sufficient to carry out the test.

Home HIV kits can become expensive, particularly if you have to do it more than once. It can take between 4-6 weeks for a person to show signs of HIV and it may even take this amount of time to show up in a blood sample. Therefore HIV tests are not taken immediately after unprotected sex like they may be for other STIs.

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