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Night Sweats, and newly HIV Diagnosis
Apr 14, 2008

I have recently tested HIVpositive, I was in the servoconversion phase when it was detected. It has been a month since. I am having night sweats every night. I have to change my sleep clothes, and wash my bedding every couple of days. I'm scared, I'm still in denial, and I am not quite sure what to do at this point in my life? I am trying to education myself, and keep a positive disposition. It's difficult. My t/cells are at 440, and my virial load is well over 500,000. The last thing I want to do is start medications. I would like to go as long as I can without them. As you can see by my message, I over whelmed, confused, and frustrated. I have a good doctor, and he explains things well, but I am not connected with other people dealing with these health issues. I am not interested in being overt in public about my circumstances. I hope some of this makes sense, and I hope I didn't confuse you. The night sweats, and how long they last is really bothersome. Thanks.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

I've been "virally enhanced" since January 1991. I do understand how overwhelming it can be to hear the unwelcome news you have become HIV positive. A period of adjustment to your new reality is normal and to be expected. I don't believe you are in "denial," because you are actively educating yourself about HIV. That's extremely important. Knowledge is power. I'm delighted you have an HIV specialist you relate to and that "explains things well!" That's another critical piece of living well with HIV.

As for night sweats, depending on their severity and frequency, they can occur as a routine consequence of any chronic viral infection (including HIV). However, night sweats could also signal an underlying problem, such as an unrecognized coinfection or malignancy. I suggest you discuss your night sweats with your HIV specialist. He'll undertake any evaluation that may be warranted.

For your ongoing self-education process, I'd suggest you peruse the wealth of information on this site, in its archives and on its related links. Start with the chapter "Just Diagnosed," which can be easily accessed on The Body's homepage under the "Quick Links" heading.

I'm here if you need me, OK? Let's get through this together.

Dr. Bob



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