Please answer me Dr. Bob, I'm devastated with fear :( :(
Mar 16, 2011
Sorry Dr. Bob I do know it's the second time I'm writing to you about my situation, but OCD is kicking in and I just can't function, have gone mad searching for every possible medical study about time of onset of symptoms and risk of precum transmission...
So my story is this: two weeks ago I had a one night stand with this 23 yo guy I met online. He told me he was negative and had last tested in October 2010. He gave me oral sex, and I also sucked his dick for a brief period of time until I realised there was precum on it. I didn't swallow the precum, but could clearly taste it.
Then we went on to have sex. I was the insertive partner, and used a condom. The condom was not rolled all the way down to the base of my penis, but I made sure the glans remained covered all the time. After I came, I removed the condom (there were clear traces of blood on the outer surface) and filled it with water, to make sure there were no leaks or breaks. It was intact and I threw it away.
6 days later, I developed this intense sore throat, that remains active today (day 11 after possible exposure). I have been on ibuprofen and paracetamol ever since, so I don't really know if there was a fever that might have been hidden by the medication, but I didn't have any malaise sensation and didn't notice any rashes in my body. My lymph nodes are also not enlarged, despite being palpable as they have always been (<1cm) in the neck and groin region. Basically all I have is really the sore throat.
But the thing is, 6 weeks ago I already had a bad strep sore throat that was treated with AB and went away. The fact that another sore throat is happening right now when so little time has passed worries me, especially because it was after a possible exposure. Also, there are no white spots or membranes over my tonsils, which makes me think of a viral cause and worry that much more that it might be from HIV.
So my questions are: could this be an HIV ARS symptom? Is a 6-day onset too soon for ARS symptoms to appear? And do you think I should get tested over this particular episode (considering there was precum involved and I developed these symptoms)?
I keep reading people on the internet making claims that they seroconverted solely due to oral sex, and it worries me a lot that this might be the case.
Thank you for your time and I am sorry if any of these questions seem dumb or inappropriate.
Response from Dr. Frascino
Your OCD is OOC (out of control). Your HIV-acquisition risk is extremely remote. However, because you are "devastated with fear," I'd recommend you get a single HIV-antibody test at the three-month mark. I'm quite confident the result will be negative.
Symptoms are notoriously unreliable in predicting who is and is not HIV infected. Your isolated sore throat is not worrisome for HIV ARS.
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