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hiv/cmv coinfection

May 21, 2011

Dear Dr Bob

My girlfriend had a liver transplant and got cmv from which I caught from her. Than I cheated on her with a woman who has advance hiv unprotected and I did not know it. And went back with with my girlfriend and kept getting infected with cmv. 5 months later I started to get sick. first burning of hands and feet. than I started to get night sweats, numb hands and feet,dirrea,red rashes all over my body that turned into dry skin flakes than very dry eyes the eye doctor said my eyes are too dry for a person of my age and look like a virus causesing it.I was a 300lb man now im 190lbs . I wake up with numb hands and feet and hearing problems. I took 4 hiv tests all negaitve check my cd4 counts 740 than 2 months later the cd4 was 597 and wbc count went down. I feel week all the time with real bad headaches and when I eat I feel sick. I think I have advance hiv with no antibodies from keep getting reinfected with cmv. how can I test for hiv if im not building antibodies and is their still hope for me to live a little longer because my cd4 counts keep droping and the doctors cant give me meds till they prove hiv. please help doctor bob I dont know what to do anymore .

Response from Dr. Frascino


I don't understand what you mean when you report you "keep getting infected with CMV." CMV is one of those viruses that once you get it you essentially have it forever, but in most cases the immune system keeps it under control. Your two CD4 counts are both completely normal. CD4 counts bounce up and down within the normal ranges for many different reasons. You really had no medical indication for running this type of test, and the normal results were to be expected. If you've had four negative HIV-antibody tests and at least one was outside the window period (six months for a significant exposure such as unprotected sex with a partner confirmed to have AIDS), you are HIV negative. Your fears that you have advanced HIV and do not make antibodies are completely unwarranted. (You would be deathly ill!)

Your problem may be related to anxiety and guilt. If your physicians have thoroughly evaluated your symptoms and found no physical cause, you should be evaluated for psychosomatic disease (which can cause very real symptoms).

Good luck.

Dr. Bob

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