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Aseptic meningitis??
Mar 1, 1999

Dr. Currier, Over 1 year ago I had an encounter (vaginal intercourse) with a woman I met in South Africa. I experienced symptoms of urethritis (pain for several months but no discharge) but nothing grew on culture and there were no leucocytes present.I took doxycyclin for 7 days but it had no effect on the pain which finally has faded. I have tested negative for all viral and non-viral stds. I have been tested by elisa many times up to 12 months for hiv1/2 including subgroup o. These have all been negative. However about 5 months ago I got a severe constant headache which I have night and day since, occasional fatigue, hot flushes in my cheeks but no fever, and tingling and numb cold sensations in my legs below my knees. My doctor feels that these are due to anxiety and he's probably right. However I'm worried that they may be due to a chronic aseptic hiv meningitis. How likely and how common would this be within one year of a possible exposure? What kind of symptoms would occur with this? I had an MR scan which was normal apart from the fact that my ventricles were a slightly bigger than what would be normal for a man of my age (late 30s). I'm sorry to bother you with this query but I'm still very worried about this and I know I should be happy to accept my negative results but it's really hard to do so when I have all these severe symptoms. Thanks - you do a great job!!!

Response from Dr. Currier

I do not know what is the cause of your headache- but it sems that HIV is not the cause. The normal MRI is reassuring too. A spinal tap would tell you if you have some form of chronic meningitis and that whoul be considered if your symptoms do not improve- especially if you have slightly enlarged ventricles it would be good to see if your CSF pressure is normal or increased. tets for other forms of chronic meningitis( coccidiomycosis, TB,lyme) could also be done. Hope this helps.

-JC


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