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what to believe

Jul 9, 2007

13 years ago, I was POSSIBLY exposed. Tested neg 6 months after that event, and once per year since.

7 months ago, I was again POSSIBLY exposed. Tested neg last month (6).

I was recently told by 2 unrelated gen practices that I had AIDS based on symptoms of white tongue, growling stomach, and severe neuropathy. As I said, tested neg last month, which was 6th month after those doctor visits. Was hospitalized (ER) yesterday because of high blood pressure, mild fever (varies in 99.x range. my body temp is usually about 97), poor balance, and broken arm/shoulder from motorcycle accident. Once again, "sounds like AIDS." Thus, I pulled the (was told it was) Saline drip (it was almost yellow, hmm...) out of my arm, got dressed, and walked out of ER, arm untreated.

I prefer to listen to the antibody test, but EVERY MD that sees me says the same thing. All but one. A dermatolist (off the clock/record) inspected my face and said I didn't have AIDS.

I suspect he was looking for hhv-8, or just being nice. After him, I have had a localized (few inches on 1 foot)grouping of red spots that resolved in a few days.

Do you care to voice an opinion? Do you have any advice?

The archives say listen to the test, but they also imply "unless your doc says..."

Response from Dr. Frascino


Two general practice doctors told you that you had AIDS based on symptoms of white tongue, growling stomach and severe neuropathy, even though you've tested HIV negative out to six months from your last potential exposure??? WHAT????? Did these doctors get their medical licenses off EBay perhaps? Relax, Max. A negative test trumps symptoms each and every time. These two doctors are as incompetent as Dubya. Strike that. No one is as incompetent as Dubya. These two doctors are ALMOST as incompetent as Dubya!

As for the ER visit, "sounds like AIDS" doesn't mean it is AIDS. Once again medical personnel willing to jump to such a diagnosis when there is incontrovertible evidence to the contrary smacks of incompetence.

My advice is that you get your blood pressure and broken arm/shoulder attended to without delay. But do so with the help of a competent physician!

As for HIV/AIDS, with negative tests out to six months, you can, as Tony Soprano would say, "fuhgeddaboutit!" (But don't "fuhgeddabout" safe sex to avoid all this confusion and worry in the future!)

A competent general internist will help evaluate any ongoing "symptoms" white tongue, growling stomach, neuropathy, etc. I can't diagnose your complaints over the Internet, but I can tell you what's not causing them: it's not HIV. No way, no how.

Dr. Bob

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