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HIV and dialysis

Oct 25, 2011

Hello. I recently met a wonderful person. I have HIV and my partner does as well. I am also on peritoneal dialysis and about 6 weeks into our relationship I came down with peritonitis. The doctors isolated the organism and determined it to be e-coli. This is naturally found in our intestinal tract and can sometimes travel through tissue into the peritoneum, according to the doctors. After completing a 21 day antibiotic regimen, I was doing fine until about 10 days after completing the antibiotic treatment, where I ended up in the hospital again with peritonitis. This time the doctors said the organism was a Vancomycin-resistant enterococcus, which may have developed as consequence of the first infection. One of my doctors suggested abstaining from sexual relations for about a month to allow my body to recover. Do you think that being the bottom in my relationship puts me at a high risk of developing recurrent peritonitis? I want to avoid hemodialysis at all cost, as I want to keep my independence and quality of life optimal. Any advice?

Response from Dr. Fawcett

Peritonitis is usually associated with anal sex in the context of rough sex or fisting, although there are cases where there is increased risk, such as recurrent infections. There can also be a risk of peritonitis from organisms entering the penis and infecting the urethra. Because of the recurrent infections and the high risks involved (including the risk of hemodialysis), I would discuss your concerns about ongoing risk sexual with your physician. I will include a link to a page on facts about anal sex from TheBody.

Good luck,


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