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Can I WOO HOO?
Mar 7, 2005

Hi Dr. Frascino!

I had unprotected oral in late October on a woman of unknown status, and in late November got sick with what seemed to be all of the sypmtoms of ARS (fever, swollen glands in the neck, armpits, and groin, loss of appetite, intense fatigue, even bleeding gums, etc). I was horrified, and got an HIV test, which was negative, and got a mono test, which was also negative. I began having serious, serious anxiety - I was certain I had HIV. A couple of weeks later, I was tested for mono again, and surprise! I had mono, and the fatigue continued for a long, long time. I was still convinced, though, that I had HIV.

My doctor told me I most likely didn't have HIV, and mono was causing my symptoms - and that I could have had mono and ARS at the same time would have been such an unliekly coincedence. I got tested again for HIV at two months, also negative.

The fatigue persisted, and I had overwhelming anxiety attacks from time to time. I finally got tested again for HIV at 14 weeks (the fatigue has almost entirely subsided), and the result came back negative.

So can I get the Dr. Frascino approval to WOO?

And I'd also like to add that throughout this entire time I've been going to therapy, and it's amazing how much power the mind has over the body - when I was having these intense periods of anxiety, my hands and feet tingled, my blood pressure went up to 180/100 (as a trip to the ER proved), and once I got my negative test result, all of a sudden my symptoms seemed to stop. Over and above the mono, I had been making myself sick for months. As the good Doctor has said, symptoms alone do not equal HIV! And senseless worrying doesn't do anything to help, in any way, shape, or form. If someone out there has been worrying like this, take precautions in the meantime, but don't let the worrying run your life!

Thanks for listening, and thanks for all of the great work, -A fan

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi Fan,

Repeatedly negative HIV tests out to 14 weeks certainly qualify for definitive and conclusive status in my book. Your initial exposure unprotected oral was low risk. Your symptoms were consistent with mono and your test confirmed that diagnosis. That combined with your negative HIV tests out to 14 weeks certainly adds up to a WOO-HOO!

I'm glad you are getting therapy for your anxiety attacks. Having symptoms magically evaporate when an HIV test comes back normal is a remarkably common phenomenon and does indeed attest to the amazing power of the mind!

Stay well!

Dr. Bob



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