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Confusion and Stress
May 2, 2004

Hi Dr Ewald , my situation has taken a strange and confusing twist. My sexual history is unprotected insertive vaginal and anal sex with multiple sex workers beginning in july and ended in november last year. I had negative elisa test 30,60,90 days since the last sexual contact.The last two sex workers whom i had sex with in october and november tested negative recently on elisa today and that would be 24 weeks since i last had sex with them. Yet with all these good news I am still suffering from constant depression, fatigue and i alwys feel anxious. I also having stomach pains for a month now and I really don't know what is causing that. My mind is totally controlling me that the 6 month test could be bad news and this has made me worried sick and has kept me away from getting that six month test. All i have is a negative 3 month test and a bad mental health. Is there any explaination to this doctor.

Response from Dr. Horwath

After 3 months, virtually all people who are HIV infected will have a positive serology. If the test comes back negative three months after an exposure, you should be confident in its accuracy.

The main problem that you described is having unprotected sex. Unprotected sex exposes you to the risk of HIV infection. This is especially true with sex workers, who have multiple partners (and if they don't use protection with you, they probably don't with others as well). Clearly, this is what is causing your tremendous anxiety and fear. In order to get control of your anxiety, you need to uniformly practice safe sex. If that doesn't help you to feel better, then you should seek help for the treatment of your anxiety.



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