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Fatigue and AnemiaFatigue and Anemia
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Nov 1, 2002

Hi Doc

Firstly i would like to say that you are the greatest. I find that you answer our questions to the T. Your knowledge and optimism has kept me going every day through the last 6 months. Daily when I log on to THEBODY I visit your page first as your insight is an inpspiration to all of us.

I am from South Africa. Anyway I would like to find out if I can WOO-HOO if my results are negative as I am taking my 24 week test on Teusday. This is my horror movie. I had a high risk exposure 24 weeks ago. experienced all symtoms i.e. 4 weeks diarrhea, muscle, joint aches, gastro problems, rashes throughout the 24 weeks. Painful lymh nodes in armpits and groin yet not swollen wich I'm still expeirencing till today, fatigue, pain in arms etc. I have tested Qualitative PCR 5,9,13,17 weeks. Quantitave BDNA 10 weeks and several ELISA up to 17 weeks and all negative. Currently still expeirencing Neuropathy in hands, wrists, and feet i.e. pins and needles, leg going numb and pain in wrists, fingers and feet. My question is 1. if my 24 week Elisa uis begative can I WOO-HOO and should I do another PCR along with the ELISA. 2. What are the oods that I will be positive based on my previous test. 3. If someone seroconverts lets say at 6 months would a PCR be positive in the first few weeks of exposure. 4. If I am negative and since I have done a million other tests for STDS and other viruses and spent in excess of 15 thousand rands in medical bills. What could be cuasing the fatigue,rashes, lymph pain and neuropathy that I am still experiencing.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart and please let me know how I can send a donation to yourselves all the way from South Africa. To all you hiv positive people remember GOD loves you and is always with you.

I little poem I made up. AIDS is a disease that could bring you to your knees. But if you are strong you can live for very long its now time to look after yourself or else the virus will destroy your health. Lets keep ourselves pure and I'm sure we will find a cure.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello South African Poet!

You log onto my site every day? Oh my, that's more than I do and I'm supposed to be the expert.

As for your "horror movie" questions:

1. Can you WOO-HOO if your 24-week ELISA is negative? Absolutely! That test is absolutely conclusive. 2. The odds you will be positive after having negative PCRs at 5, 9, 13, 17 weeks, negative BDNA at 10 weeks, and "several" negative ELISA's up to 17 weeks? Well, do you use the expression "snowball's chance in Hell" in South Africa? Another way of putting it is that your chances of being HIV-positive are zero, zip, zilch, nada! OK? 3. Yes, most likely the PCR would be positive. 4. The cause of your symptoms? Well, I really can't diagnose that over the Internet, not without the benefit of examining you and your "million other tests." However, what I can conclusively say is that it's NOT HIV! There are many causes for fatigue, rashes, sore lymph nodes, and discomfort in your hands and feet other than STD's! A general medical physician should be able to sort this out for you. Certainly, stress and anxiety over possible HIV infection (not to mention depression over spending 15 thousand rands on medical bills) could be a significant factor. If a good internist checks you over and gives you the all-clear from a medical standpoint, you should strongly consider seeking the help of a therapist to help you cope with your irrational concerns over HIV infection.

You've had way too many HIV tests already. You certainly don't need any more!

I like your poem! But now it's time for you to pick another topic, as HIV/AIDS is not your problem!

Thank you for your kind offer to make a donation to my foundation. Donations can be mailed to:

The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation 779 Altos Oaks Drive, Suite 200 Los Altos, CA 94024

Or, you can send a direct money transfer internationally by following the instructions below:

Mellon Bank Pittsburgh, PA ABA # 043000261 Credit ML Account Number 101-1730 Further Credit to: Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation Account # 830-04C48 Swift number MELN US 3P

Good luck. I hope you are soon writing poems about love, health, and happiness.

Dr. Bob

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