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HIV and Shingles
Sep 26, 2007

I am 28, male.I had shingles on my left arm 16 months ago. I was immediately asked to go for rapid HIV test. I tested negative. Before that I never had sex with anybody; never used needle for drugs...meaning- no potential exposure. The doctor kept me scared though. (He was a pediatrician sharing the clinic with a dermitologist; and got an opprtunity to treat me in absence of his dermitologist friend). He didnot treat me and kept waiting for the symptoms to worsen. I changed the doctor. This time I consulted a known dermitologist who beleived that shingles is pretty common in negative people; and that there was no need for me to go for HIV test, unless I had other symptoms. Since then I have never had sex with anybody till I got married last month to a lady who, I am sure, is negative--meaning no potential exposure again. But somewhere in my mind some kind of fear lurks, whenever I remind of that pediatrician doctor (who kept me scared even after a negative test); and sporadically I experience anxiety; sometimes a lot. I fear if I might have infected my wife!

Are there any chances that while I had shingles, HIV was in window period? Should I go for another test? If if I decide to go for one, I cant gather courage for that. Please help.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

If you had no potential HIV exposure, you have absolutely no reason to fear HIV or get an HIV test. The pediatrician was an incompetent moron. Your anxiety and intermittent HIV fears are completely unwarranted. You don't need another HIV test, but if you do get one, it will undoubtedly be negative. Stop fearing an illness you could not possibly have!

Dr. Bob



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