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HIV NIGHTMARE
Feb 17, 2000

In April '98 I had unprotected sex with a female. I have been tested for HIV antibodies numerous times from 24 weeks to 18 months and all of the tests are negative. However I am afraid that I was again exposed to HIV when I was giving blood for the HIV test at 18 months from a reused needle. So I waited 36 days then took a DNA by PCR test for HIV. The test was non-detected. I was still convinced that I contracted HIV at the testing site so I took another HIV test, at a different location, 3 months after the HIV test at 18 months. The test was negative. I am still afraid that I have HIV because I have pains in my groin that extend down my thighs, pain under my armpits, burning, itching arms and hands, white tongue and a painful jaw. Also my body temperature ranges for 98.2 to 98.8. Please tell me what I should do. Do you think I need to wait another 3 months and take a HIV test? Should I take a viral load test? Another DNA by PCR test for HIV? I am extremely concerned. Please help me.

Response from Dr. Feinberg

I think you are suffering from anxiety -- it seems highly unlikely that a needle would be reused at an HIV test site, and you have been tested many times in different ways and have always been negative. You need to focus your energy on something more productive, and get on with your life.


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