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words of hope
Aug 31, 2009

hi, doc

hope you can give me some advice. i was exposed to hiv aug 11, 2007 . a week and a half later i got swollen lymphnodes under my armpits, slight fever, this lasted about 6 days and then it went down. so right after that i got burning tonugue for about six months. i did lose about 15 pounds after i got exposed. at six months past exposure i notice my face loss fat in my cheecks. i did gain the weight back after a while,,but not in my face. so a year after i got a swollen lymphnode under my ear and never did hurt and it is only slightly swollen. but now it hurts.and bothers me. also its been two years since the exposure and i am now losing weight . my arms are very skinny. my watch rise up my forearm. also my legs are skinny,, losing a lot of fat in my arms and legs. it is noticable to me and others. i have tested many times with the elisa and hiv rna and also natt. i gave blood in may 09 and had no problems. i also just gave blood again in aug of this year and i believe it is ok. i feel bad about giving blood but im desperate. the exposure was with a known hiv positve person did not know at the time. the only thing i can think of is a different strain? i feel ok other than the swollen lymphnode under ear. i did get a cd 4 count 4 and half months past exposure it was 1564 49%. then i got another one in april 09 1,053 cd 48%. what do you think of these numbers and my situation. thanks for all you do. jj

Response from Dr. McGowan

Dear JJ,

I would like to assure you that you did not acquire HIV from your exposure in 2007. That is completely clear. While HIV has managed to spread around the world, the chances of acquiring it from any given exposure is about 1 in 250. So you beat the odds. Just focus on practicing safer sex in the future and do not worry about that past episode.

Best, Joe



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