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Re: To all Worried Well....READ!!!!! (Dec 22, 2003)
Jan 13, 2004

I just wanted to tell the writer of that posting that he is RIGHT! My story is a little different and I would love your educated opinion. I am married but I am bisexual and have over the past 5 or 6 years had 1 or 2 male partners anually that I have met on the internet. I have never had anal intercourse but the last partner I met I did allow to rub his penis against my anus. Since that time, the HIV anxiety has made me nuts. I have read all the web sites for symptoms and have convinved myself that not only am I HIV pos, but that my wife is now also. About two months after my last encounter I noticed what I though was white patches in my mouth, and convinced myself I had thrush. I wouldn't kiss my wife, and was trying to talk without opening my mouth so as not to let anyone see. I bought candida remedies online and after finally telling my wife that I thought I had thrush, I went to a doctor who told me it he didn't think that I had it but since it was an HIV symptom, I could get tested. Oh - you can imagine how I felt then - as far as I was concerned he had just told me I was going to die. Around this time, my wife began to have unexplained and now long lasting diarreah (spelling?). She has also lost about 8 pounds during this time. She has lately had some joint pain and I have a bruise on my chest that I can't remember getting. I haven't had night sweats but we both are fatigued often - whcih I hope can just be contributed to the stress of our jobs. I finally got the nerve to go to an AIDS clinic that offers free testing because I haven't been sleeping and have had a huge inability to concentrate on anything other then how I will have to kill myself if the test comes back positive. I could live with this by myself, but I could not live with the fact that I have made her sick. To make things worse, after the two week waiting period for results to come back, I was unable to go to the clinic on the one day that they give out results, and have had to wait another week. I go back this week for the results, and although my logical mind tells me that a single exposure from someone who told me they were neg (I asked him when we met) makes the likelihood of infection less then 1, it still isn't 0. The past three weeks waiting for results have been excruciating, and because I have no one to share these thoughts with it is even worse. What is the likelihood of infection from a single contact like this that did not include full penetration, and how often does the stress of thinking you have HIV cause you to have the symptoms of HIV itself (since they appear to be so close in description). In the documentation I have read on line it is vague on whether thrush is an early (first couple of months) infection or a sign of advanced HIV. Same with the diarreah and weight loss. If HIV has only the initial flu like symptoms and then can be syptomless for as long as 5 or 10 years, then am I just projecting my fears to manifest these other problems? I would love to read your opinion, and perhaps it will enlighten others who may be scaring themselves into being sick. Thanks so much. Terrified in FL

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Congratulations and thanks for writing. However, I feel I must add that "Life is soooooo GOOD" (or at least can be) whether or not someone is living with the virus or HIV negative.

Stay well.

Dr. Bob



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