Objective: To evaluate the performance of a rapid HIV antibody test used with whole blood and oral fluid in settings where the test is likely to be used.
Design: In four separate studies, we compared the accuracy of the rapid test performed on whole blood and oral fluid specimens with the results of conventional HIV tests.
Methods: Oral fluid and whole blood from persons of unknown HIV status recruited from clinics, labor and delivery units, and outreach venues were tested with the OraQuick Advance rapid HIV-1/2 antibody test. Sensitivity and specificity were compared with results of the enzyme immunoassay (EIA) and Western blot algorithm used by the study sites.
Results: OraQuick sensitivity was 99.7% with whole blood and 99.1% with oral fluid from 327 persons who were HIV antibody positive by the conventional algorithm. OraQuick specificity was 99.9% with whole blood and 99.6% with oral fluid from 12 010 HIV-negative persons; EIA specificity was 99.7%. A cluster of 16 false-positive oral fluid tests occurred in one study, in which specificity was lower (99.0%) than in the other three studies (99.6-99.8%).
Conclusions: In diverse settings in four studies, the OraQuick test showed high sensitivity and specificity for HIV antibody in whole blood and oral fluid specimens. Slightly more false-positive and false-negative results occurred with oral fluid than with whole blood, but performance with both specimen types was similar to, or better than, that of conventional EIAs.