test v symptoms
Jul 8, 2008
Dear Dr Bob
Appreciate that you receive many e-mails, I write again in hope of areply. I would also welcome opportunity to donate to your foundation.
I am in my late forties. Following unprotected genital to genital griding with sex worker (with erect tip) - without penatration, went hrough "classic symptoms" from week 4 for 6-8 weeks and had quite a rough time. Never really got completely OK and some symptoms remain or have appeared since. At week 14 had Elisa blood test at doctor for HIV 1/2 + HIV home access Hiv test at week 19 1/2.
Tests came back negative, so wish to rebuild life, however still suffering from following symptoms: 1)Dry skin, and general itchiness under armpits, and on arms which have small red dots that sometimes appear (near biceps). More general rash appears accross shoulders and upper thorax
2) Dry mouth and throat with small white spots on whole tongue that sometime turn grey and turn red sometimes if srctached.
3) Sometimes loss of taste with food tasting bitter. I have never had any thrush or mouth diseases before and am not on any medication.
4)loose stool every coule of days for 1-2 days
Feelings of mild nausea and loss of appetite sometimes
Every 2-3 days deadness or tingling in legs when seated
Sometimes head cold when tired in evening or first thing in morning
I am worried and concerned because of the number of these symptoms
With a lot of stress and some travel, I feel that my immune system is symply weak and not taking time to seroconvert.
1) Your thoughts please
2)I plan to get another ELISA HIV 1 and 2 blood test at 6 months, but if still negative (I am convinced I will be positive), I think that the only thing to get my sanity back is to test for viral load or my T CD-4 (correct spelling)? blood cell count, as if no load detected and imune system healthy, then feel that I can start to rebuild. Is this a stupid approach?
Regards and hoping for a reply
Response from Dr. Frascino
Your HIV-acquisition risk "genital to genital grinding" is nonexistent. The technical term for this activity is frottage. Some folks call it "dry docking." At any rate, no matter what you call it, no penetration equals no risk! OK?
Your negative HIV-1 and HIV-2 tests out to 19.5 weeks are definitive and conclusive. Not unexpectedly, due to your "non exposure," HIV is not your problem! No way. No how. No further HIV testing is warranted. In particular, I would not recommend an HIV plasma viral load (HIV RNA PCR), due to the rate of false-positives, other technical concerns and cost. I also would not recommend a T-cell subset analysis (CD4 count), as you have absolutely no indication to run that type of test. Even though I don't feel it's necessary or warranted, if you insist on getting a six-month ELISA, fine. The results will undoubtedly be negative.
I cannot diagnose the cause of your symptoms over the Internet. But what I can do with absolute certainty is advise you what is not causing them: It's not HIV! I suggest you follow up with your general medical doctor for any persistent bothersome symptoms. But remember, one thing is absolutely certain. The symptoms are not HIV related!
Thanks for your willingness to make a tax-deductible contribution to the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation (www.concertedeffort.org). It's warmly appreciated by those who were not so lucky in dodging the HIV bullet and are now struggling to cope with the challenges of coexisting with HIV.
Be well. Stay well. (Yes, you are indeed well!)
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