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saddened to hear of Dr. Bob's passing...and a question
Nov 19, 2011

Richard:

First, I want to express my condolences as I just heard about the passing of Dr. Bob. He was a reassuring and calming voice for everyone concerned with hiv and the community will miss him a grest deal. While they are certainly big shoes to fill, I am sure you will (and have been) filling them admirably.

As you can guess, this is not my first time visiting the site, and in some ways by now I consider myself an expert!:). However, since we are all human and I am not really an expert, it still is reassuring to hear from someone like yourself to (hopefully) confirm my beliefs about my risk (or lack thereof). Anyway, even though there are probably thousands of posts about this, I figure you need one now and then to keep everyone (including me) honest.

In this case, I was visiting China on business when a girl offered me a massage in my hotel room. Of course the smart thing would have been to reject it, but I gave in and agreed to it. Using hot oil (with the paranoid thoughts of don't know what was in it, but probably just oil!), she first rubbed my back and then the area around my anus, but there was never any penetration. She also lightly touched my scrotum as well. I then turned over, where she continued to massage my chest and my legs before rubbing my penis and giving me a "happy ending", using the oil throughout

I did not have any open cuts or wounds that I can recall (maybe some scabs, but I don't think were fresh). I did not check her hands but tend to think that she did not have any either. Only thing was that right before the massage, I had just used the restroom and done #2 where there was a little blood (I think from hemorroids or whatever the condition is described as)

I know this should be considered a no-risk situation and not ever worthy of a post, but a week after the incident, I caught a cold - no fever, primarily fatigue and chest congestion with a little coughing and a sore throat for a very short period - and so of course, it has jump-started the right(?) side of my brain into thinking what if I actually caught something even though the odds are astronomicallly against it. Also, since this is China, and hiv is on the rise through heterosexual contact, and she obviously was more than a massage therapist, it has me especially worried.

In any case, if there are any reassuring words you can offer about the incident. I did lapse, but it just reminded me why I never want to stray like this, as it could potentially put loved ones at risk.

Thanks again and good luck on your new role!

Response from Mr. Cordova

Hi there:

Thanks for writing in. Dr. Bob's passing was a great loss. A loss to TheBody.com and the community as a whole. I will do my best to honor the great work he has done in this forum...

In regards to the situation you describe, there is no risk. HIV may be on the rise in China, but since you did not engage in behavior that would allow for transmission of HIV, you had no risk. Your symptoms could be many things; it was most likely a cold.

Bottom line: No risk. Do not be concerned about HIV.

In health, Richard



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