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Cold Symptoms or HIV?
Feb 9, 2003

Back in mid December I had sex with a girl I know. We were both drunk and she pulled my condom off and we proceeded to have sex. I know it was stupid.

Over Christmas time I had cold symptoms, ie blocked nose, sore throat. That went away after about a week but now in mid february I have more cold symptoms. One day with a sore throat and then a blocked nose.

Im still active and I am not confined to bed but am extremely concerned whether these are just cold symptoms or HIV symptoms.

I have not had any rashes, mouth problems or fevers.

I just felt a bit cold one night but the main problem is a stuffy nose.

Am i being silly?

Response from Mr. Kull

Trying to determine your HIV status based on symptoms you are experiencing is unwise, anxiety provoking, and unreliable. Recent HIV infection (acute HIV infection, acute retroviral syndrome) should only be considered if ALL of the following are true:

1) You had unprotected vaginal or anal sex (inserting or receiving a penis without a condom) within the past three months.

2) Your partner was known to be HIV infected, or is a person who is in a "high-risk" category (a man who has sex with men, an injection drug user, or a person who has sexual contact with others in an area of high HIV incidence or prevalence, like sub-Saharan Africa).

3) Your symptoms are indicative of acute HIV infection (febrile illness, sometimes compared to flu or mono). The specific symptoms can vary from person to person, but acute infection most often manifests in this "flu-like" manner.

If all of the above are true for you, see a doctor to have your symptoms evaluated. If all of the above are not true, you should still have your symptoms evaluated by a doctor, but it is not likely that they are related to HIV infection.

RMK



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