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Please HELP!!
Nov 14, 2007

Doctor Frascino, Thanks for the fantastic work you and your organization are doing in regards to HIV/AIDS, and I am inclined to make a donation. I am in a dilemma and scared to death. I have what I believe to be HIV related symptoms, however, I have tested negative.

Back on Sept 1st of this year, I had an unprotected oral encounter while having a canker sore under my tongue. Also, I am unaware of the status of my partner. On Sept 4th, I had a brief flu-like illness which consisted of swollen nodes in my neck, along with a fever and sore throat. The doctor did a rapid strep test, which he told me came back positive for strep, and treated me with penicillin. The strep symptoms seem to have disappeared.

However, the lymph nodes on the left side of my neck remain swollen to this day, and my groin nodes became swollen approximately 1 month after the illness, and also remain swollen. I tested negative on elisa at 42 days after the encounter and negative 65 days after the encounter on a rapid oral test. I also have what appear to be a couple of painless ulcers near my tonsils and a white coating on my tongue. Can a person have these possibly HIV related symptoms and test negative? Are there other diseases that can mimmick HIV? I am a complete ball of stress, and wondering if this may be causing and/or exacerbating my symptoms. I am hoping this is not HIV related, but am almost sure it is. I know you cant diagnose over the internet, but I am looking for advice as to what else this could possibly be, and give any recommendations you may have. Thanks for your help and great work.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Your HIV-transmission risk unprotected oral sex while having a canker sore with a partner of unknown HIV status is extremely low to negligible.

Symptoms beginning three days after the encounter would not be HIV related. Acute Retroviral Syndrome (ARS) symptoms take weeks, not days, to manifest themselves. Your more persistent symptoms are not worrisome for HIV.

Your negative HIV tests out to 65 days are encouraging, but not conclusive. HIV-antibody tests taken prior to the three-month mark are not considered to be definitive or conclusive.

Can someone have "symptoms" like yours and be HIV negative? Absolutely!

Are there other diseases that can mimic HIV? Yes, many!

You are "almost sure" you are HIV positive. I, on the other hand, am quite confident you are not! Take a read through the archives. There you will find many testimonials like yours, all of which report ultimately testing HIV negative!

My advice is simple:

1. If you are a "ball of stress," get help for your anxiety/stress.

2. Get a single rapid HIV test at the three-month mark. I'm quite confident the result will be negative and will put your unwarranted worries permanently to rest.

Thank you for your interest in The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation (www.concertedeffort.org). In return I'm sending you my best good luck karma that your three-month definitive HIV test remains negative.

Good luck. Stay safe. Stay well.

Dr. Bob



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