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Hetero Unprotected Vaginal - Terrified of HIV
Jun 21, 2007

Dr. Bob,

I am terrified and I'll be brief.

Me- 29yo healthy US male

Incident - Visited massage parlour in montreal and performed unprotected oral on french canadian female "masseuse". Started protected vaginal but condom broke and was unprotected for an uncertain period of time.

Incident +21days - Developed sore throat for 10 days.

Incident +28days - Noticed white patches on tonsils and uvula that can be wiped away. Textbook description and appearance of thrush and its scaring the hell out of me.

T+32 days - Flipped out from waiting and sent in a HomeAccess test.

No other symptoms but I can't eat and haven't slept in days due to anxiety.

I have a 4mo old daughter that my wife will take and leave if I'm positive. I can't stand not seeing her grow up. I am wracked with guilt, anxiety and hate for myself and my decisions.

A couple of questions if you have the time;

1. Is the 5/10000 fact actually reliable?

2. Is thrush common after 3-4 weeks of exposure with no other symptoms or is it a later stage HIV incident?

3. Could me giving her unprotected oral result in thrush or something like it?

4. How should I feel about the results of the 32day HomeAccess? (I plan on 6week, 8week and 12 week follow up)

5. Any other thoughts?

I literally can't think of anything else and am losing my mind.

Thanks for all you do and please respond if you have the time.

THanks, Freaking.Out

(I donated to your foundation this morning, not to bribe you to answer my email but because regardless of how this plays out for me, this experience has convinced me to devote significant resources to HIV/AIDS going forward)

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

1. The HIV statistic you quote for unprotected insertive penile-vaginal sex is an estimate and presumes your partner is confirmed to be HIV positive. Your estimated per-act statistical risk would be less, as we don't know the status of your Quebecoise Hot Mamma masseuse.

2. I tend to doubt what you have is thrush. Even if it is, the vast majority of cases have nothing to do with HIV. In general, HIV-related thrush is a later-stage process.

3. Nope.

4. HIV-antibody tests taken prior to three months are not considered to be definitive or conclusive. Consequently, I don't recommend them.

5. Your real problem is as you state: ". . . I am wracked with guilt, anxiety and hate for myself and my decisions." You need to deal with these issues. I would recommend you level with your wife. It's not only the best way to confront your guilt and anxiety; it's also the right thing to do. What's important here is recognizing our indiscretions, accepting the consequences of our actions and learning from our mistakes. We are all human. That means we all make mistakes, even yours truly. Just be honest and learn from the experience. You could even show this post to your wife, if it will help.

Thanks for your donation. In return I'm sending you my best good-luck/good-health karma that your definitive three-month test is negative and that you are able to be honest with your wife. Please note, the odds you did not contract HIV from this French Canadian fiasco are astronomically in your favor, OK?

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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