False Positives

The tests conducted at the Blood Centre are highly specific and accurate, but even so, false positives are possible for a small number of completely healthy people.

All positive results are tested using other confirmatory methods. If the other methods yield a negative result, the first result is considered a false positive. A false positive can be caused by factors not related to a specific disease agent, such as chronic diseases, pharmaceuticals or recreational drugs.

After a false positive, the test is run again a few months later. Based on the results of the new analysis, a decision is made whether the donor can give blood or whether a longer waiting period is to be set. Regardless of the fact that the donor has no infection, a false positive means that person’s blood may not be used to manufacture blood components.

False positives often raise concerns for donors, but this is in many cases due to lack of information. We thus consider it very important to provide the donor with information. We are always ready to answer any additional questions and explain all aspects of the problem. For more information, talk to the doctors at the Blood Centre.