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Recovering "HIV-Phobe" Still Has Question for the LOVELY DR BOB!

Jun 30, 2003

Dr. Bob-I must say you and Mr, Kull really do good work here. I am a "recovering HIV-phobe", if there even is such a thing! After reading through all this site has to offer, I wish I knew about it when I was not "recovering" because it probably would have helped me avoid my breakdown. In any case, I'm glad to know it's here now. As I said, I'm "recovering" not "cured" yet. According to my therapist, it will take time for me to break away all of my obsessive-compulsive behaviors surrounding HIV. It is also very comforting to know that I'm not alone, a LOT of people have or have had the same fears I did, regardless of how irrational they may seem to other people. My biggest problem was not being able to talk to anyone for over 2 years about my fears and living every day in a nightmare. i purposefully gained weight so that I would know if I had a "sudden weight loss" and examined my throat and glands at least 20-30 times per day. It was like a tape was playing in my head over and over again, trying to convince myself that I was negative. Even after I re-tested negative 2 years after my last possible exposure, I still had fears. There is more, but you have better things to do than read all about my craziness.

In any case, I do have a question. LIke I said, I'm "recovering" not "cured" yet! Through all of the extensive research I have done, I understand that HIV can only be transmitted the following three ways:

1.) Unprotected vaginal, anal, and oral sex. 2.) Blood to Blood contact through sharing needles or occupational exposure. 3.) Mother to infant.

I have read all of the numerous ways that you have said that mutual masturbation does not carry a risk for HIV transmission, but here is my question. About two months ago, I jacked off a guy and some of his pre-cum may have gotten on a nick in my cuticle. I don't believe it was a cut because there was solid skin at the base of the cuticle, so it looked pretty much like a tiny piece of my cuticle was missing. The one thing that I know for sure is, there was no blood from him or me. Now, would that nick be included in the "mutual masturbation is not a risk for HIV" or does that nick push the experience into another category, such as occupational exposure since some pre-cum got onto a nick? Again, there was no blood-that I'm sure. And I'm also sure that at the base of the nick was solid skin. According to the CDC hotline (my main source of info-but I have called them too much and most were beginning to recognize my voice until I got help!) it has to be an openly bleeding cut to pose any kind of risk. And according to the counselors at Body Positive, if it were bleeding, the risk would be so low that it would be near impossible to become infected because it's not an entry point into the body.

What I would love is if I could hear what an expert doctor believes regarding the situation, that would be you love! I hope to hear from you soon! Take care!

Does your foundation accept PayPal? I would most definitely love to donate! Please let me know!

Love-"Not 2 Crazy"

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi Not-2-Crazy,

Sorry to hear about the breakdown. You actually purposefully gained weight to avoid "sudden weight loss syndrome"? WOW, Id love to hear what the folks at Weight Watchers had to say about that!

Im delighted you are on the road to recovery. Dont let the mutual masturbation episode put a "nick" in your recovery! Your nicked cuticle is not at all worrisome. I totally agree with the CDC and the other experts --- you did not have a significant exposure.

Sorry the Foundation does not set up to accept PayPal donations. That service costs money and we prefer to keep overhead costs to a minimum so that the full amount of all donations can be used for crucial patient services, and HIV/AIDS education and awareness. Personal checks, direct wire transfers, money orders, gifts of stock, old cars, abandoned alien spaceships or whatever are all accepted and very warmly appreciated.

Stay on that yellow brick road all the way back to full recovery. OK?

Dr. Bob



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