Anxiety and HIV symptoms
Jan 18, 2012
I recently tested negative for HIV; but I have had anxiety for the past 6 weeks putting in my head that I do. I have read 24/7 symptoms associated with HIV/AIDS and my anxiety over this on a scale of 1-10 is an 11. Every symptom I read about I get or at least my brain tells me I have it and physically - it appears: Low grade fever, swollen lymph nodes throughout my body, dry mouth/chapped lips, blurred vision, dry heaves, flu like illnesses. I have had this now for 4 weeks straight. My question to you is can my anxiety/thinking 24/7 for a long period of time produce symptoms that would convince me that I have HIV? Worry to death about this
Response from Dr. Wohl
The answer is yes. All of us are capable of making ourselves ill. Just look at how many of us need stomach medicine or develop stress headaches. There have even been pseudo-outbreaks of illness in buildings and schools that were found later to have been caused by the power of suggestion.
That is why the best advice is for you to a) stop reading about HIV, b) follow the recommendations of your health care provider. If you get tested and are found to be HIV negative weeks after a potential exposure, you are negative and should move on. If your symptoms remain, then an alternative diagnosis needs to be looked for. DW
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