You are the Tops Dr. Bob, Please answer!
May 15, 2003
I am an expat working overseas in a country that tests for residence visa renewal for hiv and deports if +. I recently had an exposure with a sex worker insertive protetcted vaginal sex and insertive unprotected oral and unprotected digital vaginal (I had a 4 hour old paper cut on the adjoining fingure). I came down about a month later with mild swollen glands in my neck and groin area and under my arm pits herpes like mouth ulcers on the inside of my mouth and on my lips. My 33 day hiv antibody was negative, but I am afraid to test more because if it is positive I will get deported. Reading your site I know my risks are low but I would really like to hear your opininon if I should tested again (my yearly mandatory test comes up this summer) and if HIV is not something I should be worried about do my symptoms indicate andother STD that I should be tested for? I would really appreciate an answer, and whether you answer or not I will make a contribution to your foundation, since I really admire the work you are doing and only wish that I had your courage.
Response from Dr. Frascino
That deportation law sounds as archaic as some of the laws still on the books in Texas but thats another story! Protected sex should not pose a significant risk for HIV, assuming the latex condom didnt break and was used properly. Insertive oral sex carries an extremely, extremely low risk for possible HIV transmission. The digital play --- even lower! Do I think you are HIV positive? No, I do not. Of course since there still is at least a theoretical risk, the only way to be absolutely certain is to have an HIV test 3 months or more after the potential exposure. Your "mild swollen glands" are most likely "normal" or related to something other than HIV. "Herpes-like mouth ulcers" could be related to a variety of viruses --- including herpes. However again, its unlikely to have anything to do with HIV. Show them to your doctor when they are visible. They cant deport you for having herpes --- can they??? Im glad you learned from my site just how low your actual risk for HIV is. My opinion has not changed in the least. I truly dont think you have much to worry about as far as re-testing. Many thanks for your contribution to the Foundation! The address can be found at the end of my bio-sketch posted on this web-site. Good luck. Lets hope they abolish that absurd law in the very near future!
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