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RELIABILITY OF BRITISH TEST AFTER 3 MONTHS
Sep 23, 2009

HI BOB,3 MONTHS AGO I HAD AN AVERAGELY RISKY ENCOUNTER, 1WEEK LATER I PRESENTED SYMPTOMS OF SWOLLEN EAR LYMPH NODES AND BODY RASH(ITCHY AND LIGHT), 1 WEEK LATER IT RECEDED FOLLOWED BY GENEARAL LYMPH TENDERNESS ,DEEP PAIN JUST TO THE LEFT AND BELOW MY CHEST,MALAISE, DRY SKIN, WEIRD THROAT AND A FEW WEEKS AFTER THAT STRANGE HEADACHE. THE MALIASE AND SYMPTOMS WENT AFTER ABOUT 8 WEEKS AND ALL THAT IS LEFT IS PATCHY LYMPH TENDERNESS SOAR THROAT AND THE PAIN TO THE LEFT AND JUST BELOW MY CHEST. . SO FAR IVE HAD A P24DUO TEST AT 4 WEEKS AND SEVEN WEEKS. A THIRD GENERATION ANTIBODY TEST AT 9.5 WEEKS, 11.5 WEEKS AND 13.5 WEEKS. AND A PCR RNA AT 12 WEEKS.(MY THINKING IF THE ANTIBODY IS NOT SHOWING LETS LOOK FOR THE VIRUS). THEYRE NEGATIVE. IM NOT NATURALLY PARANOID, BUT THE LYMPH TENDERNESS AND PAIN JUST BELOW THE CHEST AND THE SYPMTOMS STRAIGHT AFTER THE ENCOUNTER ARE BOUND TO MAKE ME SUSPICIOUS. I REALLY KEEN NOT TO PUT MY WIFE AT RISK.ID LOVE TO HEAR YOUR THOUGHTS. BY THE WAY YOUR SENSE OF HUMOUR IS SO FUNNY IT MAKES ME LAUGH OUTLOUD!

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hey British Guy,

Your negative p24 duo tests at four and seven weeks, negative 3rd generation antibody tests at 9.5, 11.5 and 13.5 weeks and your undetectable quantitative HIV PCR RNA at 12 weeks are definitive, conclusive and a bit excessive. You could (and should) have been doing cartwheels through Piccadilly Circus while yelling WOO-HOO like a banshee in heat after a single negative HIV-antibody test at the three-month mark! Your multiple other negative tests merely corroborate what the three-month test would have told us. Negative is negative, no matter how many times you stick your arm out for blood tests! Most likely your hypervigiliant anxious state has more to do with guilt over your "walk on the wild side" than with any true HIV-acquisition risk. For that guilt the only remedy is to level with your wife. It's not only the best way to confront guilt; it's also the right thing to do. She may be the one screaming like a banshee in heat when you tell her, but it's still the right thing to do.

Be well. Stay well.

Dr. Bob



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