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Some people experience a short illness soon after they contract HIV which is known as an HIV seroconversion illness or acute HIV infection.

This happens in 40-90% of patients and usually occurs 1 to 6 weeks after being infected.

Typical symptoms include:

  • -Fatigue
  • -Fever
  • -Sore throat
  • -Rash (generalised non itchy maculopapular rash)
  • -Headache
  • -Loss of appetite
  • -Aching muscles and joints
  • -Swollen lymph glands
  • -Diarrhoea

Symptoms can be very mild and often confused with a common cold, the flu or glandular fever.

The risk of onward transmission is particularly high during this time as the viral load is very high and patients are often unaware of their infection.

Testing during HIV seroconversion with an HIV antibody test may produce a false negative result as the antibody may take 3 months to develop in some people.
Modern 4th generation antibody/antigen tests can detect 95% of infections 4 weeks after infection.

If you are suspicious that a patient is seroconverting but the HIV test is negative we suggest a repeat test is done in 1-2 weeks.

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Opening Times

Opening times for Department of Sexual Health, Salisbury District Hospital (GUM)

  • Monday: 09:00 - 17:00
  • Tuesday: 09:00 - 17:30
  • Wednesday: 09:00 - 16:00
  • Thursday: 09:00 - 17:30
  • Friday: 09:00 - 12:00
  • Saturday: CLOSED
  • Sunday: CLOSED

For walk in times at the Department of Sexual Health, click on the view clinic button below.


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Opening Times