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Worried from unprotected sex
Jan 11, 2008

I'm a 25 year old male and had unprotected sex with a friend of mine on Nov 1st. She is on the pill, but since educating myself, I'm now very worried about hiv. I've become crazy worrying about it. She has assured me time and time again that she has been tested and is negative for all STD's, including hiv I just dont know how long ago. I went and got tested on Dec 4th (4 1/2 weeks after our encounter) and tested negative for all STD's, including hiv. Should I feel good about this, I do a little bit, but am still very worried...what do you think I should do? A bit of information - I had a bad flu-like illness during our encounter, which was the worst the morning after our episode. Mucus, sore throat, cough, etc. I tried to fight the illness with rest and natural remedies, but eventually went to the doc for medication. It cleared it up about 1 week after our episode. I've experienced fatigue and tiredness since then, but since I'm praying it is because I've been working a lot, eating and going to the gym late, with less then 6 hrs of sleep a night...but I just don't know. As a result, I'm very worried seeing the hiv symptoms. I didn't have any loss in appetite, sores or chancres in my mouth or genitals, illness or enlarged lymph nodes. 2 weeks after my encounter, I developed an oval rash and got patches that had raised outer-rims and lighter centers all over my body. They were on of my body including: my neck, stomach, sides of abdomen, inside of my biceps, trunk, around, but not directly on my genitals, back, neck and a few isolated on my lower legs & lower forearms. For the most part, the only time they itched was after a shower and itched & became red quite a bit when I work out. Could this be a symptom of hiv? I saw a doc and he told me it was Pityriasis Rosea, but I'm worried because of my hiv risk and timing of the rash. The patches dried out and are now almost all gone, but I now have hypopigmentation (lighter spots) on my body where the patches were. I also developed very dry, flaky, white skin on my face around my chin, ears, on the creases of my mustache area and side of face, and my nostril folds. They become dry and flake throughout the day, in the morning and when I get out of the shower. I've seen a lot about seborrheic dermatitis and I'm very worried as it shows up being linked to hiv. They do not appear oily at all, just very dry. Could this be due to the change in season to winter? Is Seborrheic Dermatitis an acute/early symptom of hiv I should be worried about? You provide an amazing service to the community and I promise you that I am waiting for my next paycheck to donate money to your fund. With Blessings - Thank You.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Unprotected sex does place you at some degree of risk for STDs, including HIV. As for "symptoms," they are notoriously unreliable in predicting who is and is not HIV infected. Yes, seborrheic dermatitis can be seen in conjunction with HIV; however, it's important to note that the vast majority of cases of seborrhea are completely unrelated to HIV! The bottom line is that you had unprotected sex. Consequently you need an HIV test at the three-month mark, whether or not you have symptoms, OK?

Finally, regarding your negative HIV test at 4.5 weeks, yes, this is very encouraging, but not definitive or conclusive. (The large majority of HIV-infected folks will have detectable levels of anti-HIV antibodies in their blood within four to six weeks.)

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

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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