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please help
Mar 18, 2009

First I must say your answers to people's questions are the most professional, accurate and most importantly sensible i have ever seen on any medical site. I am 25 male who has had definate risky sexual encounters 7-8 years ago and one about 3 years ago. my problem is i have developed symptoms I am concerned about over the last 3-4months. I had a bad flu like symptoms (bad coughing, full of mucus and feeling crap generally that all started with sore throat. I got swollen lymph nodes in neck and behind ear shortly after) i put this down to being worn out as i had just moved countries for a new job. Howwever since then my sore throat has continued till this day. straight after flu i noticed small bumps on top of mouth (mostly soft part a few slightly larger on begginig of hard part of roof of mouth) and raised papillae all down back of tongue into throat. throughout all this i have had problems with bleeding and swollen gums and then developed dry mouth and what i now think is hairy tongue as at first could brush it off tongue in general but now tongue covered and only a bit brushes off. to my horror i have developed anal warts also during this period and am now convinced this is all due to later stage hiv and opportunistic infections. I went to GP about 6 weeks after sore throat started had bloods and mouth swab taken and was told nothing on it )had not really considered hiv then and dont think a immunology report was done. When i returned to my gp few weeks later complaining sore throat still there and dry mouth developed bad i felt he treated me like a hypocondriact saying my tongue is normal and i've just never looked properly before. I know my own tongue, and its current state is not healthy with the mentioned lumps and covering (had done a lot of brushing it beforehand so covering maybe didn't look bad) and the sides almost looking like they have slits in. now my tongue also has purple streak at back where covering is worse, its hard to see due to covering over it. Also i now seem to be getting sebhorric dermititus on my face around my nose and eyebrows. So i guess my questios are, 1.do you think the things i have mentioned are likely due to later stage hiv as i'm becoming more convinced due to developing symptoms of things that are all linked to immune compramised state. 2. do you think my blood tests would have shown any concerns if i did have hiv even though immunology report not done (gp said no viral infections found but i have no idea what would have been tested for.)

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

I'll agree my responses are "accurate" and hopefully "sensible," but "professional"? Hmm . . . have you read some of the stuff I've written? Well, thanks nonetheless. I appreciate the kind comments!

Responding first to your specific questions:

1. No.

2. No.

Now a few comments:

1. If you've placed yourself at risk for HIV, you need to get HIV tested whether you are symptom free or have "every symptom in the book." Symptoms are notoriously unreliable in predicting who is and is not HIV infected.

2. Confirm your "anal warts" diagnosis with a physician and get them treated if the diagnosis is confirmed.

3. If your doctor says your tongue is normal, I suggest you believe him. He's seen way more tongues than you have!

4. If you had advanced-stage AIDS, you would be extremely ill. You are not!

5. Get HIV tested! It's long overdue and there is an excellent chance a WOO-HOO is waiting for you!

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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