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ONLY YOU DR. BOB
Jun 17, 2006

Dr. Bob,

I am really sorry to bother you. I have always wanted to send you and your foundation a donation, so this time I really am, I am not just saying it, I want to send you a donation because I have donated over the years to other Aids organizations, S.F. Aids Foundation, etc. I have lost 4 close friends to this disease back in the '80's and early '90's, one especially close friend from High School who "came out" after graduation and I never once looked at him any differently, he was the same Tony to me, and we remained close friends til his death. (God I miss him). Well, my problem is that I have had an Hiv test back in Sept. of last year and was neg. but I still fret over maybe still being positive, was the test done wrong?, clerical errors?, Did I wait too long and the anitbodies disappeared?, etc. I still check in my mouth every morning because I remember my friends symptoms. I feel really guilty about this because I tested negative and their are others who really have this disease, and some I watched suffer and die back when it first came out. Please Dr. Bob help me stop looking at myself and go on with my life and focus on others who really need support. Do you think because I have seen up close Hiv and its illnesses with others that I could have this irrational fear. Thanks for your time.

Lisa

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Lisa,

HIV tests are remarkably accurate. The chance of technical or clerical errors is remote. Did you wait too long and the antibodies disappeared? No, that is not possible. Anti-HIV antibodies do not disappear. If you were HIV positive, you would test positive for anti-HIV antibodies for life.

I agree your fears are irrational. Whether this stems from your experience losing friends to AIDS in the 80s and 90s or some other psychological issue, I cannot determine over the Internet. I see absolutely no reason you should continue to check your mouth every morning or harbor residual fears of being positive.

To put an end to these unwarranted worries, I would suggest you get a single HIV rapid test. The results will be available in 20 minutes and will undoubtedly be negative. If that does not completely calm your anxieties and fears, I would strongly recommend counseling. Tony and the other friends you've lost to AIDS would certainly not want you to be wasting your healthy existence worrying about a nonexistent problem.

Good luck!

Dr. Bob



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