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Field evaluation of a dual rapid diagnostic test for HIV infection and syphilis in Lima, Peru
  1. Claire C Bristow1,
  2. Segundo R Leon2,
  3. Emily Huang3,
  4. Brandon J Brown4,
  5. Lourdes B Ramos2,
  6. Silver K Vargas2,
  7. Juan A Flores2,
  8. Carlos F Caceres2,
  9. Jeffrey D Klausner3
  1. 1Division of Global Public Health, Department of Medicine, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA
  2. 2Unit of Health, Sexuality and Human Development, and Laboratory of Sexual Health, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru
  3. 3Division of Infectious Diseases: Global Health, Department of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, USA
  4. 4Program in Public Health, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, California, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Claire C Bristow, Division of Global Public Health, Department of Medicine, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive 0507, La Jolla CA 92093-0507, USA; cbristow{at}


Objectives Screening for HIV and syphilis in key populations is recommended by the WHO to reduce the morbidity, mortality and transmission associated with undiagnosed and untreated infections. Rapid point-of-care tests that can detect multiple infections with a single fingerprick whole blood specimen using a single device are gaining popularity. We evaluated the field performance of a rapid dual HIV and syphilis test in people at high risk of HIV and syphilis infections.

Methods Participants included men who have sex with men and transgender women recruited in Lima, Peru. Reference standard testing for detection of HIV and syphilis infections, conducted using blood samples from venipuncture, included Treponema pallidum particle agglutination and fourth-generation HIV enzyme immunoassay for which positive results had a confirmation HIV Western blot test. For the evaluation test, SD BIOLINE HIV/Syphilis Duo test (Standard Diagnostics, Korea), a fingerprick blood specimen was used. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated and the exact binomial method was used to determine 95% CIs.

Results A total of 415 participants were recruited for the study. The dual test sensitivity for detection of T. pallidum infection was 89.2% (95% CI 83.5% to 93.5%) and specificity 98.8% (95% CI 96.5% to 99.8%). For detection of HIV infection, the sensitivity of the dual test was 99.1% (95% CI 94.8% to 100%) and specificity 99.4% (95% CI 97.7% to 99.9%).

Conclusions This high performing dual test should be considered for the use in clinical settings to increase uptake of simultaneous testing of HIV and syphilis and accelerate time to treatment for those who need it.


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