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Extremely worried.. Should I tell my parents?
Sep 2, 2007

Hi Dr. Bob,

I made the most stupid mistake of my life the moment i went into the massage parlor in Shanghai. I had vaginal sex with a prostitute during which the condom slipped off. It's been 10 days since the exposure. I had severe pain in my left groin 3 days after the exposure and now I am developing rashes on my body. I am so scared that I had contracted aids. I read articles saying the number of new HIV patients in Shanghai has increases significantly and that 65% of them were caused by unsafe sex. I haven't slept in a week. My parents are asking me why I can't sleep. But I am too afraid to tell them!!! What should I do???

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

"Symptoms" three days after a potential exposure would not be related to HIV primary infections, as symptoms of acute retroviral syndrome (ARS) take weeks, not hours or days, to manifest themselves.

As for telling your parents, that's up to you. I have no way of knowing how old, independent, mature or sexually experienced you are. Because you had a condom failure (improperly used), you'll need to be screened for HIV (and possibly other STDs as well). Wait at least until the three-month mark for your HIV test to assure the test is definitive and conclusive.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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