Advertisement
The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
   
Ask the Experts About

Safe Sex and HIV PreventionSafe Sex and HIV Prevention
           
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
Recent AnswersAsk a Question
  
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary


Can I stop cyber-stalking you now?
Mar 1, 2009

Dear Dr Frascino, This is the medical student who has been panicking in a very dark place for 2 months. I am being more formal than usual this time because I respect your opinion so much.

Today I got the results of a PCR test done 10 weeks after exposure, 6 weeks after finishing PEP, 5 weeks after the onset of PGL and a flu-like illness.

Both were negative/non-reactive. I have also had non-reactive antibody tests at 5 weeks and 8.5 weeks post-exposure.

I know the recommendation is to get an antibody test at 12 weeks and again at 6 months, which I will certainly do, but in the meantime, can I be sure that my symptoms (which are actually ongoing) are not due to acute HIV infection?

I know this fear has happened to others and I wish it on no one and I should get on with my life, but I think it will be difficult for me. The confluence of a high-rish exposure, ARS-like symptoms and signs (in the absence of any other likely explaination) and the timing of the end of my course of PEP made me nearly certain I was seroconverting.

Can I woohoo or do you think there's still a chance I am infected?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Panicking Medical Student,

What you will learn as you progress in your medical training is that being "nearly certain I was seroconverting" and actually seroconverting are two very different things. If you review the archives you'll find gazillions of testimonials from anxious wrecks who were "110%" certain they were seroconverting, but eventually realized they were HIV negative, despite having "every symptom known to man".

Your repeatedly negative tests to date post-PEP are extremely encouraging. I do not believe your symptoms are HIV related. (Your negative PCR corroborates this assumption).

I remain extremely confident your definitive post-PEP HIV-antibody tests at three and six months will continue to be negative. Hold the celebratory WOO-HOO champagne until you get your final results. However, I certainly think you can put it in the ice bucket and get the flutes ready, OK?

Finally, I'm concerned about your degree of anxiety and panic over this incident. Irrational fears of HIV could hinder your becoming an effective physician. You should consider counseling to help you conquer these fears before they begin to interfere with your internship, residency, fellowship, etc.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



Previous
Insertive Oral Sex, Is PEP warranted?
Next
FUNNY FUNNY FUNNY FUNNY FUNNY FUNNY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

 Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS


 
Advertisement



Q&A TERMS OF USE

This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither TheBody.com nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint

Advertisement