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Would you tell my girlfriend the truth...please!!
Jul 2, 2006

Dr. Bob,

I have been enjoying my HIV negative status and have not been on the website in a while. HOWEVER!! If you don't help me here, I may never have sex protected or not with my girfriend ever, again!!! You may remember, in late May/early June 2005, I have unprotected, insertive anal sex with a man of unknown status. (I was experimenting with the world of bisexuality.) After this encounter, I was tested, using Quest Pathology's, EIA test at my doctor's office. The result was negative. This test was at 24-26 weeks with no other exposure. I, then, tested using Trinity BioTech's UniGold HIV test on March 10, 2006 and, again, on May 27, 2006. These were negative, as well.

However, my girlfriend spoke with a member of the State Health Department who told her it can take a year or more to detect HIV. Additionally, she quoted the Pilcher report from North Carolina in her responce to my girlfriend. I tried to explain to my girlfriend the man, in the Pilcher study, had a CD4 count of 2 which means he was one of the 25% of Americans living with AIDS, but not aware he had been infected with HIV. In other words, it seemed this man was not tested for HIV until he was diagnosed with HIV and, by then, his condition had worsened to AIDS.

Yes, as you know I am working for an HIV project in my state, so will you please, please help me--

1. Would you explain to her three tests out to 50-54 weeks is conclusive and I am HIV-?

2. Would you validate to her the Pilcher case study is, indeed, what I explained to her or correct me if I am in err?

3. Yes, I know I owe you and Dr. Steve and I hope you have not written me off. Have you?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

If your girlfriend doesn't want to forgive your indiscretion, I'm not sure there is much I have to offer. That decision is hers and hers alone. I will, however, respond to your questions:

First, I should mention that 25% statistic you cite wasn't quite accurate. It's 25% of the over one million HIV-positive Americans (not "Americans living with AIDS") who are unaware of their HIV-positive status.

1. I, and virtually all HIV specialists, would advise that repeatedly negative HIV tests out to 54 weeks are definitive and conclusive. You are unquestionably HIV negative.

2. This extremely rare case has been much discussed. However, if someone doesn't worry about being struck dead by an errant lightening bolt or being torn to shreds by a rabid Tasmanian devil who just happened to escape from local zoo, then they really shouldn't worry about this extremely rare circumstance either. I'll publish below an article that deals with the details of this case.

3. Why would we write you off? You haven't cheated on us, have you????

Stay well.

Dr. Bob



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