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Won't be able to write in much longer since I will be blind soon
Mar 8, 2011

Hello again Dr Bob, I hope you had an awesome vacay. As for me, things have only gotten worse.

I've written to you numerous times, and thankfully, you always respond, for that I will be eternally grateful. It might sound sad and pathetic, but right now you are the only friend I have. I turn to you everyday for comfort, reading your answers and trying to find the strength to test so I can get treatment.

I've posted my symptoms to you, as well as my husband's. You're convinced that I am HIV- because he and I took an Oraquick oral fluid test that came back negative. However, I know that the test was wrong and have been unable to test again due to fear.

I cannot wait any longer. I plan on making an appointment Monday due to my new symptom. Over the past three weeks I've developed severe eye floaters, something I've never had before. I'm only 32, nearly 33, and there is nothing normal about what is going on with my eyes. These floaters are in both eyes and constant, no matter the background, but especially bad when I'm outside. I see a very large one as well that indicates I've had a detachment.

I went to an Optometrist for a regular eye exam. I told him about the floaters but he seemed unconcerned and only did a slit lamp exam. This I know would not allow him to see my retina, therefore the exam was pointless. But why would he think anything was wrong, since I didn't tell him my fear of CMV.

I have come to realize in the past two days that my fear of facing a positive HIV test is going to end in blindness. It might already be too late, as my last possible exposure was more than ten years ago and now my eyes are failing. I have read that CMV never goes away and blindness happens within two to six months. I don't have much time.

Other symptoms, just for a recap, include: night sweats, hard painless enlarged glands, sores in nose and mouth, red tongue, red spots on inside of cheeks, weight loss of twenty pounds, severe dandruff of the scalp and eyebrows, sudden outbreak of acne on face and body, an odd purple spot that has appeared on my thigh, odd red sores on my arms and legs that will not heal, dry peeling palms, itchy dry skin, bags under eyes, tingling/numb feet and hands, headaches, depression, anxiety, fatigue.

My husband's: diarhea, bags under eyes, acne on face and body, strange purple spots on legs and chest, weight loss, fatigue, constant headaches, warts on his arms, odd rashes that become painful and swollen on different parts of his body.

I'm writing to you again to ask for your good luck karma. I HAVE to test before I lose my vision. I think blindness may be as scary as HIV, but having both together is unimaginable, though I've read on this website about it happening. Not sure how anyone deals with such a thing, and I know I don't want to. But if I don't get tested soon, I will be facing that reality whether I want to or not.

Send your karma for my eyes, I'm praying my vision can be saved. I've lost all hope for a negative result on an HIV test. You might find that ridiculous, and maybe it is, but when I read the symptoms others have posted I still think mine are worse. Combine their symptoms with their risk and their numerous negative tests, I envy them their WW status.

Thanks again Dr. Bob. Wish me luck.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Before spending money on a white cane or getting a seeing-eye dog, I strongly suggest you wait for your HIV-antibody test results. You are going to be pleasantly surprised by the result!

You are correct: I am quite confident you and your husband are HIV negative because you've both had negative HIV-antibody tests (OraQuick oral fluid test) and your last potential exposure was a decade ago!

The vast majority of your symptoms could be related to anxiety and depression resulting from your irrational fear of being HIV infected.

Even though I don't think you need it, I'm sending my good-luck karma that your HIV test results will once again be negative. I have absolutely no doubt you'll be WOO-HOO-ing when you see the results!

Good luck! Write back with your results and I'll post them for other fluffernutters stuck in the "I'm Positive I'm Positive" conundrum!

Dr. Bob



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