Feb 13, 2008
Dear Dr. Bob,
I am the guy with Thrush as main symptom who had received a reply from you a few days before. You had diagnosed a negligible risk of me getting a HIV-infection and had advised me to get a rapid test.
I did gather courage to get tested today. My results are negative (HIV_AG_AB test had an S/CO value of 0.37; Interpretation = negative). As you can imagine, I am much relived. I have been reading through your responses on a daily basis for the last 15-20 days and would like to congratulate you on the excellent work that you are doing. I am yet another addition to the list of people who get anxious trying to self-diagnose their symptoms before seeking help from a medical professional (I met a dentist before taking the test and he told me that I did not have thrush. I, Mr. Internet Doc, on the other hand was convinced that I had thrush). My admiration for the work done by physicians across the world in general, and your work in particular increased day-by-day in the last 3 weeks. Additionally I hope to make safe decisions in my life (and advise my friends as much as possible) with my new knowledge.
Apart from my small donation, if there is any other way that I can help your organization, please let me know. I will be in Chicago for the next 2-3 years while I attend b-school. Say my hello to Dr. Steve and if you are ever in the Chicagoland area, you have a friend who will take you out for a drink.
Thank you and God bless.
Response from Dr. Frascino
Hi Chicago Guy,
Congratulations and WOO-HOO! (Do you know how difficult it is not to say "told ya so; told ya so?!") Thanks for your very kind comments and your donation to the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation. Both are warmly appreciated.
Be well. Stay well.
2nd Time (thrush main symptom) Feb 10, 2008
Dear Dr. Bob,
I had written once more, but did not receive a reply. As suggested, I have also searched the forum for answers to queries similar to mine but did not find a very close situation (some were similar though), and so my question to you again.
Background - Fooled around with a girl some time back, kissing, caressing, etc. She gave me a handjob (I had a condom on). On a second occasion, she sucked my penis for 1-2 times without condom, but no fluid exchange. All this while, there was no penetration
Symptoms - 2-3 months after this, I had a severe case of stomatis (as prescribed by an ENT doc). Took many antibiotics. It healed up in 1 week. I also had slight fever for ust 1 day. And had 3-4 red color marks on chest (no pain, irritation in these). Since then I have had a case of white tongue. It has been 2 months since then and I keep having the white tongue. It is stedily improving, but it is still present. From my research on web, I found that stomatis is a severe case of "Thrush" and thrush is an indicator of HIV infection. Apart from spending time on web looking through this (which is not very helpful at work), I seem to be obsessed with self-diagonising this (definately not a good thing, because I am an engerring graduate and not a medical professional).
Some questions: 1. What do you think are my chances of infection? I know getting tested is the only sure way to get an answer, but can you estimate what are the risks? Also is a rapid test a good thing to go for? I have also contemplated a rapid HIV test (FDA approved) that you can run at home? 2. Is persistent thrush (if I have one, my self-diagnosis is white tongue) common? What can be some of the factors that cause this? The condition is getting better but it is not completely gone. I am driving myself insane checking the color of my tongue every 1 hour at work!
I have a good year coming up (good relationship, MBA at top school), and now feel depressed with this uncertainity and anxiety. I look forward to your response and would gladly help out with a donation for your good work.
Thanks, Waiting for your answer.
Response from Dr. Frascino
Your HIV-acquisition risk is negligible.
Stomatitis means inflammation of the mouth. It does not mean you have or had thrush. There are many causes of mouth inflammation.
To address your specific concerns:
1. Negligible. FDA-approved rapid tests are very accurate.
2. No. (And I doubt you have thrush.) Thrush can be associated with the use of antibiotics or steroids, a suppressed or deficient immune system as well as a variety of other underlying conditions.
Stop driving yourself crazy and drive yourself to your doctor's or the local clinic and get a rapid HIV test. You'll be WOO-HOOing twenty minutes later.
Thanks for your donation to the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation (www.concertedeffort.org).
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