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a high risk experience in a high risk part of the world
Nov 9, 2010

I recently had unprotected sex with a sex worker in Bangkok(a fairly well-known hotbed for HIV/AIDS). About 11 days after my encounter, i began experiencing a very mild sore throat which seemed to only bother me when i woke up first thing in the morning. my sore throat would quickly subside once i began my day eating/drinking,exercising,ect.i didn't think too much of it at the time until i noticed my sore throat had not gone away for about 2 weeks. there were no other symptoms at the time, although my mild sore throat did begin to bother me a bit more on occassion throughout the day whenever i would swallow saliva only. i guess you can say my throat felt rather dry because when i was drinking fluids, chewing gum, and eating foods my sore throat seemed completely unnoticeable. around day 14, i began experiencing pulsating pain in my abdomen where my spleen,liver, and stomach are located. the pain was on and off from day 14-28. It was far more noticeable in the morning time while i was laying in bed. i had problems finding comfortable positions to lay in because my organs seemed to be palpitating oftentimes. it seemed most of the pain was coming from what i perceived to be an enlarged spleen because of the discomfort i felt in my left shoulder blade. later on, I also noticed that i had a few mild bruises on my legs and a painless mildly swollen lymph node or two in my groin and armpit. on day 28 i had a bad motorbike accident where i broke a bone and needed surgery at a local hospital. besides a slight fever a few days later it seemed all my symptoms had subsided. that was until i began noticing that i had caught a mild case of thrush. i had been keeping a eye on my tongue since day 1 throughout "the scare" and i could never detect any symptoms of thrush beforehand. apart from the thrush, i began noticing herpes like lesions in the back of my throat that persisted for about a week. i tend to get cold sores but had never experienced anything like this in my throat. now for my questions: 1)i have done a fair amount of research and most websites do not mention abdominal issues i.e. spleen and liver pains as symptoms to acute hiv syndrome. how do you feel about this and does it make sense for these abdominal issues to arise 14 days into my "infection scare" after i had experienced the 2 week sore throat? 2)can the trush and mouth sores somehow be related to the multitudes of anti-biotics i was given during my 3 day stay at the hospital following my crash. i am aware that trush and mouth sores are a sign of acute hiv syndrome but are they also common symptoms 28 days into acute hiv syndrome? right now i'm just crossing my fingers hoping that these were all just symptoms of Mono. i'm 31 now and never recall having the mono virus anytime in my life. although i am prepared for the worst i would really appreciate your advice on what you think. thank you, ban

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

1. "Symptoms" are notoriously unreliable in predicting who is or is not HIV infected. The bottom line is that you put yourself at risk for STDs, including HIV, by having unprotected sex and consequently you need an HIV-antibody test at the three-month mark.

2. Absolutely. The antibiotics are almost certainly the cause of your thrush.

Finally, with a name like "Bang-kok," of course it's going to be a well-known hotbed of hot beds, hot sex and the consequences of cock banging, right?

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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