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Anxiety ridden and not sleeping.

Jan 18, 2009

Dr.Bob, I am losing sleep over something that seems senseless. I had an allergic reaction to tomatoes and couldn't seem to get the itching to stop. I went to see my allergist and he wanted to see if i was still reacting so he took his pen, the end of the pen, not the ink end. He ran it down the inside of my arm pretty hard to see if I had dermographia. The line was about 6 inches and it did puff up. Her is my worry, it is the what if, what if the person before my had hiv and he did that to them? Could this have been an issue for me? I don't recall bool, just a long raised red area. I don't know if a scratch like that is considered broken sjin, can't stuff get into skin that way? I don't know why this is bothering me, but please help me resolve it. I really don't want to call his office over this, for fear that he will think it is ridiculous.I would love to send a check, if that is the best way to donate.

Response from Dr. Frascino


Not only are you losing sleep over something that "seems" senseless, but you're actually losing sleep over something that is senseless! Along with my other board certifications for immunology, asthma and pediatrics, I'm also a board-certified allergist! (Yes, I spent a lot of time in post-doctoral training programs!) Your allergist performed the test for dermatographia (which means "skin writing") appropriately. This simple noninvasive test carries absolutely no risk for HIV transmission! The test does not break the skin. Rather it just tests to see if the skin overreacts to the pressure of the pen or other blunt object. (It's often done with a disposable tongue blade.) I see absolutely no cause for concern whatsoever.

Thank you for your donation to the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation ( It's warmly appreciated. Now stop worrying and get some sleep. Those dark circles under your eyes are a bad fashion statement.

Be well.

Dr. Bob

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