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Should I start now, your advice please :-)
Aug 27, 2002

Hi Doctor Wohl,

Thank you for all your support, care, and compassion in taking the time out to answer all these questions. We are really appreciative of what you do. I am in a bit of a pickle literally. I am unsure whether or not i should start medication. Can you please just give me a suggestion and point me in the right direction that's all i ask. I had a needlestick accident with a needle used to draw blood with an individual of unknown status. I didn't recieve any PEP following the incident. I have tested neg at 40 and 57 days via the DNA PCR testing method. I have also tested neg at 3 months with EIA. I do however have symptoms. Possible thrush but unsure since i am no doctor, itching that has come and gone in the last 5 months, daily appearance of rashes and pimples on face and body that either leave red marks or disappear. I am going to test now at 6 months in September. Is it common for hiv rashes to still appear in the 5 month from needlestick exposure? I was stuffed up for a good four months, and now the stuffy feeling comes and goes. I have also now a more outbreak of skin pimples and dry skin on my arms that before i never noticed. This may sound crazy but i am have no idea, so i am asking, do baby ks lesions in early hiv infection appear and disappear in days? I am a white male so i look at any pink wierd looking pimples with concern. So in September i am going for an EIA test but i wanted to ask you, just if and i am hoping that if it comes out negative now in september should i follow up this testing in august because it would break the 12 month barrier. Or would a simple DNA PCR at 6 months with a negative result again rule out hiv infection. It is a needlestick incident and thats what makes my negative testing to this point more uncertain. Please just point me in the right direction because i would like to start treatment if the worst has come down.

Thanks a million,

Scared Jason

Response from Dr. Wohl

Dear Jason,

You are by definition HIV negative and I suspect will remain so. Testing for HIV antibodies at 6 months will confirm that you did not acquire HIV from your needlestick.

While we used to perform HIV testing at 12 months following exposure it has become clear that it is improbable that it would take 6 to 12 months to serocovert (go from negative to positive antibody test) following an occupational exposure.

Get tested at 6 months then stop worrying. I predict your rashes and other symptoms will vanish. - DW

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