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hiv enteropathy and celiac disease
Jun 22, 2009

Dr. Frascino,

First, i want to say you have an awesome way of mixing harsh reality and humor!! It is very comforting to get answers from you even if i don't like every answer. I want to first say i have been worried about HIV for years and years now. I have been tested multiple times and all are negative. I recently have been diagnosed with celiac disease and the one problem that does not want to go away is my "geographic tongue"!!! My concern is maybe i have hiv enteropathy? My tongue was biopsied and it came back benign migratory glossitis. Could it be EC or another type of fungal infection? There are times that my mouth burns sooo bad i just want to cut it off!! I would never but thats how bad it is. The bald patches come and go and i get little red like pimples on my tongue that come and go as well. Could you please shed some light on my situation please!!! Thanks for all of your help!!!!

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

Unfortunately this is probably going to be one of those answers you won't like. But nonetheless here it is. You report you've been worried about HIV for years and years and that you've been HIV tested multiple times. All test results were negative. So, exactly what part of "HIV negative" are you having difficulty understanding?

Geographic tongue is not pathognomonic of HIV/AIDS and only HIV/AIDS. The vast majority of cases of geographic tongue have absolutely nothing to do with HIV/AIDS (as is obviously the case with you!).

My advice is that you see a good ENT specialist for treatment of your geographic tongue problem and that you stop perseverating on a disease (HIV) that you could not possibly have. A negative FDA-approved HIV-antibody test taken outside the window period (three months) trumps "symptoms" each and every time.

If you cannot let go of your irrational and totally unwarranted HIV fears, I'd recommend you seek counseling (psychotherapy) to help you accept the truly wonderful news that you are HIV negative.

Good luck. Remember, HIV is not your problem!

Dr. Bob



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