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Acute Symptoms as Severe in IDUs
Sep 3, 2008

I read that ARS symptoms may not be as severe in IDUs, particularly the fever, skin rash, pharyngitis, and myalgia. Have you heard anything about this? The reason I ask is because I've had an accidental needlestick from a solid tip suture needle that pierced my latex glove. No PEP. Im waiting to be tested but had some interesting symptoms the week after the stick (mild pharyngitis, headache, arthralgias, anorexia, petechiae on my soft palate (most interesting of all). My concern is the fever, rash, and pharyngitis is reduced because of the type of exposure. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Also, have you heard of anyone ever having petechiae on their soft palate during acute infection? Could it be some sort of platelet disorder? Thanks for all your work. I will be making a donation to your foundation.

Worried sick in South Florida.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Worried Sick in South Florida,

An accidental needlestick from a solid-tip suture needle does not qualify you as an IDU! Your symptoms are not worrisome for HIV acute retroviral syndrome (ARS). Your concerns about reduced severity of ARS symptoms are not warranted or valid.

Have your doctor check out your petechiae on your palate. I do not believe this is HIV related. I also agree PEP is not warranted.

Good luck on your HIV tests.

Dr. Bob



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