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BAM-BAM: The Saga Continues...
Feb 4, 2005

Dr. Bob,

You're in deep trouble my friend. I just got my NEGATIVE 95 day (could be more) Home Access Test results.

In my first post ("So Afraid") you said that a 3 month test would be conclusive in your opinion. So now you are in big trouble because I have had every symptom and sign there is. At least I have you five days past the 13 week window.

Ok ok. I had spent more time preparing myself for a positive result but I did have some rational thoughts tucked away for the Negative part.

A) My sex (two times) was protected B) Oral unprotected is low risk (two times) C) I did not know her status D) I have had a past of anxiety / depression E) Symptoms Mean Nothing - only a test can diagnose HIV disease

My first thoughts: Woo-hoo. 2nd thoughts - why woo-hoo when there are many not as fortunate. This whole experience has been such a learning experience. I have been touched by people in the medical profession, touched by people that are HIV+ (yourself and others) and many in general who were there for me.

Please, fellow worried wells listen to my symptoms.

0 - Protected Sex with Thai Bar Girl (basically a Sex Worker though they make some cash off of just guys who need company at the bar)

Day 10 - Friend Steve who has traveled to Thailand says (BAM-BAM -- you better have wore a rubber - there is a lot of HIV in Thailand...)

SO THERE WE HAVE IT - THE SEED HAD BEEN PLANTED

Day 16 - Chills, Aches, General Crappy Feeling, Retro-Orbital Eye Pain, Lost Voice for about six days Also develop chronic cough (though I am a smoker)

Day 30 - The real flu hits (had a positive flu test) realized that Day 16 sickness was not the flu! Oh shit ... I had ARS!

Notice: White tongue, Tiny red dots on arms, Floaters, Notice I have lost a few lbs...sometime have a temp as high as 99.4!

Day 60 - Shooting Stomach Pains, Nausea

Day 75 - One night of night sweats...

Day 80 - Severe Muscle twitches, Cramps, General Itching...WTF MATE!

Summary: Perfect timeline for ARS symptoms (though I have certainly felt that way before), start hitting the net and self diagnosing. I will never forget the night I found my large tastebuds and thought they were thrush! (I had never seen them before). I worked myself into the worst panic attack ever. I didn't believe my doc when he told me those small red spots were harmless cherry angiomas. I almost told him he was wrong. He brought me a book with pictures of REAL petichiae and purpura (not pretty).

At night my panic would get so bad I knew I could feel the virus pulsing through me. No man, that was prolly cortisol or whatever your body releases under severe stress. My fight or flight response has always been more of a flight - so why didnt I listen to the experts? Because I thought I was different. Even my 9 and 11 week test, plus the assurances of many that my case was not high-risk did nothing but act as a temporary reassurance.

Ok so I will get tested in 6 months just to be 99.9% sure. But right now I refuse to fall into the Slow Seroconversion Worried Well.

I am gonna Woo-Hoo all the way to my check book to cut Dr. B a phat check and then woo-hoo all the way to CVS (not to buy another home access test) but to buy some nicorette and some laytex condoms.

Life is precious. Rock out and love one another. Dont be like Bush. The man has a good heart but wont stand up for the people who need him. You can be a Republican if you want. Just dont be blinded by ignorance and hate. Science is a beautiful thing. Dont let your faith in God take away from the fact that he has blessed man to do so much! Lets make sure the brains have the resources (money and facilities) to work for better treatment and a cure.

Dr. Bob -- bless you man. I didnt know you existed before this scare. I felt like a rock star when you even responded (not once but twice) to my posts. I have known two men who have died of AIDS related illnesses. One was a member of my church and one of the most talented men I have ever known (if you could have only seen his Church Lady impression). The 2nd was my hairdresser Ed who was one of the funniest men I have ever known. I am so touched by people like you. A new seed has been planted tonight. I will now join the fight!

BAM-BAM

PS - And Bob. Though I am straight (why must all straight men talk this way?) -- you are dead sexy. My best to yours and Steve!

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hey BAM-BAM,

The "Slow Seroconversion Worried Well???" Just what we need, a new subcategory of WWs! On the bright side, the S2W2 (Slow Seroconversion Worried Wells) are really just X-Filers who haven't quite accepted their negative status yet. So let's call you a "PA-X-Filer" (Pre-Approved X-Filer) instead, OK?

As for Bush having a "good heart," well yeah maybe, compared to Cheney's . . . but I really don't see either one of them as "goodhearted." Considering the problems we have in the world today, did Bush need to spend time in last night's State of the Union Address to push for a constitutional amendment to write discrimination into the Constitution? Let's see . . . Iraq, soaring deficits, Iran, North Korea, terrorists, nukes, global warming and uh . . . preventing Bob and Steve form getting hitched. That makes sense, right? Even putting that aside for a moment, it's not Bush's heart (or lack thereof) that worries me, but rather his mind (or lack thereof).

As for you finding me "dead sexy," I'm flattered. I don't know why I have that affect on straight guys, but I think it's time for me to change colognes again. Anybody want my half used bottle of Kenneth Cole's Black?

My advice, BAM-BAM, is for you to quit smoking, stock up on latex condoms and start WOO-HOOing . . . not in that order!

Thanks for your contribution!

Stay well, BAMster.

Dr. Bob



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