|Just Donated to RJFAF, can you help me please?
Nov 18, 2009
I just donated to your Foudation and I was hoping you could answer my question.
I shower at the gym a lot (more than at home) in downtown NYC. Lately, I have had athelete's foot and some skin peeling and redness. On the front 2-3mm below nail line the edge of my toes (next to the big one) I have very small healing cut (maybe 0.5x2mm) from peeling some of the scaling skin a bit too much that I don't believe was bleeding but I am not sure. I also have other peeling red but not bleeding athelete's foot on my toes.
After the experience, I squeezed the toe cut a it and could not draw any blood. On the kleenex, there was a little clear fluid the size of maybe pinhead where the scab was.
After showering recently, I had a panic attack because I fearful that I possibly contracted HIV. I know men in my gym likely often 'relieve' themselves in the private showers stalls at times, meaning semen could easily be on the floor. I didn't see any blood (whcih likely would have scared me and I would not have gotten in.)
I am scared and sadly, some of my fear my have something to do with the fact that 50% of the men at my gym are gay and maybe at greater risk. My mother is a gay woman, so please understand that I am not a homophobe (the law passed in my home state of Maine recently disgusts me) but since gay men are the highest risk group this heightens my fears.
Is there a risk for exposure and infection in this scenario? Would this merit testing or am I being paranoid/OCD-like?
Thank you so much for your great work.
| Response from Dr. Frascino
Your fears are unwarranted. HIV testing is not medically indicated. I'd suggest you get your athlete's foot treated and wear flip-flops or shower sandals while using the communal showers.
Be well. See you at the bench press!
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