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More symptoms in Singapore
Aug 23, 2005

Dear Bob,

Thanks very much for replying me in Singapore. (It's affecting me greatly in Singapore) I summoned the courage for a HIV screening that tested for antibodies on a strip. It looked much like a pregnancy test kit.

Good news, I tested negative on the 14 day mark. However, I know it's not conclusive and that I would have to retest at the 3 month mark.

Now for some unpleasantry. I developed flu-like symptoms (day 15),mucous and nasal congestion, more nausea, still frequent headaches, tasteless tongue (oral thrush?), feeling feverish but no fever as yet and joint aches on my limbs, toes and fingers. The rashes still persist, more new crops and still itching with some. As mentioned, red spots with some looking like mosquito bites and a few like blotches. And I feel like choking all the time and my neck feels swollen, this causes part of my nausea. Swollen lymph nodes?

I'm getting really concerned now and it seems like I'm developing all the symptoms related to ARS. This is day 16 since exposure. I can't help but feel that the 10 seconds of unprotected oral sex was really risky as she may have sores in her mouth. I know I may be getting paranoid as well but I can't help with all these symptoms showing.

Bob, please help me. This is driving me crazy and I'm a nervous wreck now. I will keep my promise to donate once I'm all well and fine. And I swear no more casual sex ever again. I just wanna Woo-Hoo. I can't promise much but I'll send in at least 100 dollars.

1. Are my current symptoms representative of HIV infection? What if I develop a fever subsequently, will it be HIV then?

2. Will the body develop antibodies once ARS symptoms are present? And in this case, is the HIV screening that I undertook reliable?

3. Can it be other STDs?

I trust you much more than the general practioners here.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello again Singaporean Worrywart,

1. Are your symptoms representative of HIV? No, absolutely not.

2. Will the body develop antibodies once ARS symptoms are present? Yes. The HIV screen you took is encouraging; however, tests taken prior to three months are not considered definitive.

3. Can this be another STD? That would be doubtful form the information you provided. However, if you are concerned, STD screening can easily be done.

Your HIV risk 10 seconds of unprotected oral is negligible. I recommend testing at the three-month mark solely to calm your irrational and unwarranted fears. I also recommend counseling in the interim to help you cope with your anxiety over this issue.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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