Evaluation of two rapid screening assays for the detection of human immunodeficiency virus-1 infection in emergency department patients

Gabor D. Kelen, Thola A. Bennecoff, Richard Kline, Gary B. Green, Thomas C. Quinn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In order to determine the sensitivity and specificity of two rapid human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1) assays compared with enzyme immunoassay and Western blot and to assess their potential use for routine screening in an emergency department (ED), we analyzed sera from 492 consecutive ED patients using an identity-unlinked design. Sera were analyzed for HIV-1 by standard enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and Western blot and two rapid assays: the Abbott Testpack HIV-1 (Abbott Labs, Inc, Abbott Park, IL) and the HIV-1 Genle, (Genetic Systems, Seattle, WA). Seroprevalence of HIV-1 among 492 samples was 5.1%. Both rapid assays were easy to perform and required approximately 10 minutes per test. Sensitivity and specificity of both rapid assays were 100% and 99.8%, with positive and negative predictive values of 96.2% and 100%, respectively. It was concluded that both rapid assays showed high concordance with standard enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and Western blot. Since the ED is often the primary care setting for many patients at risk for HIV-1, the ED may be an optimal site for routine HIV-1 screening. Rapid assay screening may provide the opportunity for timely identification of HIV-1-infected patients, allowing earlier treatment and counseling. However, ethical and practical questions regarding appropriate application of rapid HIV-1 testing in EDs still needs resolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)416-420
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Emergency Medicine
Volume9
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 1991

Keywords

  • HIV-1
  • emergency
  • testing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine

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