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Dr. Bob I want to live
Jun 29, 2005

Dr. Bob, Please answer me question. I engaged in unprotected oral sex with a high risk man (insertive and receptive) I got cum in my mouth and my gums were all tore up. A couple of days later, My groin became inflamed. I went to the doctor who gave me a (chy) (gon) and syphlus test. They were all neg. I was given antibiotics just in case. At 11 days I got thrush, but I thought it was the antibiotics so I didn't freak. At three weeks I started to get PN real bad in my feet. I got scared and I called my doctor. I was diagnosed with PN. I was given a bunch of tests for causes of PN, but they all came back non-reactive. My doctor scheduled an appt. with a nuerologist.(I have the appt. tomorrow) I called a clinic in Chicago and talked to an HIV Counselear. He said I could come in and talk in person. I talked to him and told him what I had been going through. He talked to one of the doctors. The doctor came in and he talked to me. He gave me an Orasure Test and PCR/RNA test (23 days post exposure). I knew the Orasure would come back Negative (Because of the timeline) but I thought for sure with the amount of PN pain that I had that it would come back through the roof with virus particals and I could get help. It came undectable (<400 copies). I had a follow up at the same clinic with another doctor there. He was very nice and spent an hour with me. I made a file with all my medications and symptoms and he looked it all over. He went over my entire body. THe doctor kept saying 'It's not HIV', 'It's not HIV' I asked him how could he be so sure. He stated You had no viral load 'No viral load.' at 5 weeks I got desperate and I ordered a PCR/DNA through a service. You go to quest diagnostics and give blood and it's tested for you. It measures down to 10 copies. I thought for sure it would come back reactive and I could get help! That came back non-reactive. At just past six and a half weeks I ordered another ELISA for HIV 1/2. I am awaiting those results. My regular doctor doesn't even take me seriously anymore. The last time I saw her she didn't even examine me. She just wrote out a prescribtion to a anxiety drug. I am all messed up doctor..My feet and legs burn so bad and I get a feeling of electricity running through them all the time. It's so hard to work. The only sense or relief I get is when I walk around. It's so constant and unbearable. It's starting to get into my hands. Since this has been happeing I have been living the life as someone who is HIV Positive. I do this because I know I am..I know that I have it and everyday I cry so much. I know you say to use symptoms as a diagnostic tool, but it's all to coincidental. I am not going to list every symptom that I have, but I have had every single one. Even this gosh darn PN. I am at the point where I believe so many other people are who read these questions and write these questions. Scarred, alone, confused. I know I have it.. I am just so afraid of the future and I have been waiting to show up positive on one of these darn tests. I want to save as much of my immune system as possible, but it seems like there is no way around the darn window. Please, Dr. Bob, I am not trying to be an anxious person and go around the timeline. I am trying to save my own life. Please!! What the heck is going on with my body?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Apparently your gums aren't the only thing that's "all tore up."

Dude, if you are "living the life as someone who is HIV positive," it is only because you are choosing to do so, not because you really are HIV positive. In fact, all the evidence would argue you are not HIV infected.

Your risk oral sex carries a low risk for HIV transmission. Your tests, including PCR/RNA, PCR/DNA and several antibody tests out to six weeks, are all negative. Your symptoms are consistent with anxiety, not HIV. Chances are your PN is not really PN after all. And even if it is, HIV is not the cause.

I suggest you spend some time reading through the archives of this forum. You'll find many stories of folks just like you who had a wide variety of exposures and symptoms and who all "knew they had it." That is until their tests proved they didn't.

I also strongly recommend you get some counseling, because even though you are "trying not to be an anxious person," you are not succeeding in that endeavor.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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