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I HATE YOU, BOB! THIS IS 7th TIME!
Nov 14, 2004

Dear Dr. Frascino,

Sorry for the improper title. I just wanted to catch your attention. Of course, I don't hate you!

First of all, I would like to thank you for your great work here. Like someone wrote in this forum, you are truly an angel!

Let me get to the main point. I am a hetrosexual male and had a sexual encounter (unprotected giving/receiving oral sex, handjob with virginal fluid and protected virginal intercourse) with a high risk individual (escort). About two weeks after this encounter, I started to have symptoms that are consistent with ARS (cough, spiking fever, swollen lymph nodes/tonsils, etc.). Now at five weeks after encounter, symptoms are slowly fading away (except tonsils and lymph nodes). As you can probably imagine, I am extremely worried and scared. I am very stressed out and coming to the point that I can't function normally anymore.

I will have a test at 13 weeks, but I don't think my brain/body can handle such a long period of time with this level of anxiety/stress. Please give me your opinion! Am I infected?

Thank You.

Worried Fella

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Worried Fella,

Now I've gotta wonder just how high risk could this individual be if the handjob and protected intercourse were really "VIRGINAL???"

OK, Worried Fella, listen up. Oral sex carries a low risk for HIV transmission. Handjobs are not considered to carry a significant risk and "protected" sex is indeed protected if a latex condom is used properly and does not fail. Consequently, your overall HIV risk is low at best.

Stop stressing out about symptoms. Symptoms are notoriously unreliable in predicting HIV infection. Don't believe me? Try reading the testimonials in the archives of this forum. That will take you at least 13 weeks and should provide you with considerable reassurance while waiting for your test.

"Virginal" or not, if anxiety and stress continue to be a problem, consider seeking some counseling to help you cope with your fears. What's important to realize how is that all the odds are in your favor.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob


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