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One More Question
Oct 7, 2008

Hello, I hate to bother you again, but here goes. I am having a horrible time shaking the fear that I can't trust my negative rapid test. It was a whole-blood OraQuick Advance done one year after the exposure, but with the story about false negatives, coupled with some odd symptoms I've had, I'm really worried I may be one of the unlucky ones. My understanding is rapid tests sometimes miss "early" infection and advanced AIDS, but what about the middle of the road possible infections past the window period? I know your clinic does rapid testing so I'm trying to take comfort in that. But I've had pain and burning in my chest along with a weird feeling when I swallow (I'm a 35-year-old female and I don't think it's angina) and I'm petrified I've got Esophageal Candidiasis. Do you recommend a standard ELISA? And could I possibly have this AIDS-defining condition so quickly? Thanks for helping ease the fears I am trying so hard to shake. And p.s., I made a donation to your foundation. I wish I could give more but every little bit helps.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

You, like so many other worried wells, may have "one more question;" however, the one-more-answer always remains the same. Your fears are irrational and unwarranted! Your negative one-year whole-blood OraQuick Advance test is definitive and conclusive. HIV is not your problem. No way. No how. (No McCain. No Sarah "I can see Russia from my house" Palin.) You do not have esophageal candidiasis. Although there is no medical reason for you to have a follow-up ELISA, if this will put your residual fears permanently to rest, it may psychologically be worth the time, effort, blood and cost. The result will undoubtedly be negative.

Thanks for your donation to the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation. "Every little bit" does indeed help when you consider it only costs 85 cents to treat an HIV-infected pregnant woman and her infant with antiretrovirals to help prevent mother-to-child spread of HIV during childbirth.

Be well. Stay well. Stop worrying and start WOO-HOOing!

Dr. Bob



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