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From Portugal - Panic
Mar 25, 2010

Hi there Dr. Bob,

Im completely fraking out. On 19th October I had a wild sex party with two trannies. we performed unprocted oral sex - no cumming in the mouth - hand jobs and I penetrated (with a condom) one of them. On 11th November I got a severe foliculite on my beard area, that got worse because I scratched and also shaved with a razor, and on the 13th I got swollen lymph node on my left side neck (on the most serious affected area), I noticed the swollen gland at night but next morning it was gone. the foliculite remained until the 17th November (I shaved on more time with a razor on the 16th). On the 22nd November I got some flu? or cold symptoms, like running nose with expectorate, some sneezes and coffing. tjis lasted for three days. On mid December I got a neck pain that lasted some days. At this time I was completely stressed about being infected and I was walways thinking of it. the neck pain went away when I went to vacation on Christmas. also on mid December I got a hemorroid and I still have it. By this time I started reading all that can find in Internet, and from time to time I get some night sweating (sometimes I dream of it and wake up to see if Im sweating), I never Had a soaking pijama and sheets sweat but I value the sweats a lot. I'm also looking like 10 times a day to my mouth checking it and sometimes I find a ulcer in my mouth or tongue (it goes away in 3 or 4 days). I cant remember if it was common on me, because I never valued them untill now. Sometimes I start thinking about the symptoms, and my muscles start to hurt and my joints also. Im writing this and starting to get pain all over my body. I wont make the test because Im to afraid that it come out positive....

Help me.... Do you think that based on my risky practice and on the symptoms I mentioned, that Im infected? or that Im starting to get crazy?

Im completly stressed. I think on this and on dying, and on suffering almost all the time.

also on mid February this year I had severe diarreha, that lasted one day.

help me please....

I wont do the test because just thinking of it starts to make my feel dizzy, and once I got so anxious that I fainted... Is panic covering all over me, I start to feel hard to breath and my heart rate stars to pump, and I start to sweat and my legs start to ....

help me plesase. Im donating you fund 250 euros.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Portugal Panic Guy,

Regarding your HIV-acquisition risk, unprotected oral sex, masturbation and protected insertive sex carry only a very low risk.

"Symptoms" are notoriously unreliable in predicting who is and is not HIV infected. That said, your particularly symptoms are not worrisome for or suggestive of HIV acute retroviral syndrome (ARS). For instance, beard folliculitis is a common condition. That it is worse after shaving and scratching is logical and to be expected. That you tend to experience increased symptoms when you think about the possibility of being HIV infected or even when you type a question to me clearly demonstrates the degree of your anxiety and the psychological overlay of your problems. These increased symptoms are psychosomatic. That means they are induced by stress. I'm not saying they are not real, but rather that psychological stress, and not HIV or something else, is the cause.

I'm quite concerned that you are experiencing panic attacks to the point that you actually fainted! I also completely understand your fears of being tested. These fears may well be exaggerated due to guilt ("wild sex party with two trannies").

Your primary medical problem right now is stress, anxiety, guilt and panic attacks. I strongly urge you to seek the help of a psychiatrist who can help evaluate and treat these conditions. Psychotherapy (counseling) and medications (anti-anxiety medications) can be extremely helpful. Print out a copy of your post and my reply and show it to your psychiatrist at your first visit. It will help focus your treatment and speed your recovery.

I'm confident that appropriate treatment of your anxiety and irrational fears will give you a better perspective on both your true HIV risk as well as on the value of HIV testing. But first things first. Your HIV risk is so low that there is no urgency for testing. However, it is urgent that you get help for your anxiety and panic attacks, OK? Ultimately I'm quite confident you will test HIV negative. The odds are astronomically on your side, OK?

Thank you for your generous donation to The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation (www.concertedeffort.org). Your one gift will touch many lives in desperate need. On behalf of those lives, please accept my heartfelt appreciation. In return I'm sending you my best good-luck/good-health karma that you are now and will always be HIV free.

Be well.

Dr. Bob



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