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Any common diseases that mimic HIV?
Apr 23, 2011

Dr. Bob,

I have a friend who was afraid of a possible exposure he had in 2003 with a woman. He got tested 8 times back then, ELISA, Orasure tests, bDNA, PCR. I believe out to 8 months after possible exposure. All negative.

He went on with life and as far as I could tell did put this behind him. However in 2009 he started having swollen lymph nodes in various spots. They cast a wide net in testing but only found some high Aldolase levels, low testosterone and low vitamin D, but it is a northeastern state so many have low vit d here.

He also had 4 more HIV tests. 2 Blood Antibody, 1 PCR, and 1 Orasure. All negative. This was now out to 7 years passed possible exposure.

One thing that does worry me is that he does seem to hang onto things like Sinus Infections and things like that longer than before. The biggest unexplained symptom that is visible to me and him is his legs seem to have lost fat as well as his butt. Pants don't fit the same anymore... This loss seems to happen more when these periods of flu or sinusitis hit and then he recovers again.

He just had a CD4 count done for the heck of it and his CD4 is around 1100 and CD4% is 47.

To make a long story short is there any illness that comes to mind that could mimic HIV... latent tuberculosis? He's been tested for diabetes, toxoplasmosis, hogdkins and all the other STD's but nothing ever shows up.

The fat loss keeps him focused and believing that's it's somehow HIV and he knows that makes no sense so it just drives him crazy. He doesn't know what to do or what to look into.

I just wondered as a concerned friend if you know of any diseases where people thought they had HIV, but it turned out to be something else.

Thanks for all you do!


Response from Dr. Frascino

This forum is dedicated to HIV-positive folks, particularly those who have concerns related to fatigue and/or anemia. Questions related to HIV transmission, prevention, safer sex, HIV testing and risk should be sent to Dr. Bob at his "Safe Sex and HIV Prevention" expert forum. Please resubmit your question there using the same title and add the phrase, "resubmitted form the Fatigue and Anemia Forum." Thank you.

can i consider my tests conclusive
Second posting, please please do respond - undetectable VL, non-M subtype virus strain?

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