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A MUST read for the WORRIED WELL

Jan 25, 2003

***READ EVERYTHING BEFORE YOU GET DISCOURAGED!***

Hello. I have been living with HIV for 9 years. Recently, my health has been declining, and thought that this was the best time to start meds. So, needless to say, I had some blood work done to see how bad off I was. This was Monday, January 20th.

The test that I had was an HIV test. I know that you wouldn't be here unless you knew what that was. Anyway, my results were very confusing to me. I found out yesterday afternoon (the 24th of Jan.) That I was HIV negetive. I have been living with a disease for 9 years that I didn't have. Really, I read some posts on here (some really dumb ones, I might add) About little tiny symptoms that were totally irrelevant to HIV. I remember reading some posts about ARC, or the mono-like illness that most people get right after they are infected, and PRAYING that I was in their situation, because then I would get tested and be under the care of a doctor and monitering my ilness, and I would start meds before it's too late, etc,etc, I just knew that I waited too long. I even told my psychiatrist that I didn't know how much long I had because I kept getting worse and worse.

I have had swollen lymph nodes everywhere (groin area in paticular) on and off for the past 7 years. I have been diagnosed with sinuitis, serhebic dermatitis, periphial neuropathy, folliculitis, fungus of the fingernail, heart palpatations, severe depression, and anxiety. I also had night sweats, extreme fatigue, weight loss, nausea, a white coating on my tounge, very irregular periods, (sorry gentleman!) little purple spots here and there, my hair was falling out, and I would get sores that would never heal.

But I am HIV negetive. How can this be? All the signs are there! I have been sick for NINE years! I got tested. I bet you anything, that I will get better and better as time goes by. I really believed that I had HIV. I also believe that I damaged my immune system because of chronic stress. That's what made me so sick. Your mind can play terrible tricks on you if you let it. The only thing worse than living with HIV, is living with it when you don't have to. Please, take my advice and get tested right away. I have wasted a decade of my life. Leave poor Mark alone! Getting tested is the best thing that I ever could have done for myself. I already feel like I have a new life, and soon, a lot of my physical symptoms will go away. I am a whole new person. If you do get tested, and you are +, there are meds that man make you live a normal lifespan! (Right, Mark?) Chances are that your symptoms are due to stress, mine were. But, if there not, then you need to know so you can live a long, normal life. It's harder to repair the immune system the the longer you wait to be tested. Who knows, I might of died from stress. I don't want anyone to go through what I went through. Do yourself a favor, do ME a favor, and get tested. It's not a death sentence anymore. If you find out early, you'll be fine.

I really hope that I convinced one person out there to get tested. You'll be so glad that you did. I am.

Kristi

Response from Dr. Holodniy

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