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alcholism and smoking

Feb 2, 2012

Hi Dr. Wohl,

I really need your help. I have been an unrepentant alcoholic and chain smoker for 15 years. Recently things have ratcheted up and I'm concerned about my mental health but more concerned about my liver and lungs.I did a despicable thing four and a half years ago. I got tested 20 times with the rapid test and 2 pcrs for subtype b all negative. My coworkers say I have it, I should just die or do society a favor and kill myself. God bless the HR department! Anyway I'm still concerned about this. I go to a psychiatrist but he's worse than useless, he diagnosed me bipolar, now I can never get life insurance, god bless him too. What to do, how do I stop this endless nightmare? I went as far as to tell one of my sons playmates parents (who happens to be an HIV/HCV specialist) this story, she said there is no way I'd be dead or in the hospital by now. Now my son doesn't play with his friend anymore. I know there will be a cure or vaccine someday but what do you do in the meantime? There was a time when I was in peak physical and mental health I desperately want to put this behind me. I want to stop drinking and smoking but how can you when everyone says you are going to die, what is the point?

Response from Dr. Wohl

It really sounds like you have proven you are not HIV+. So, that is not the issue, it is the other stuff, namely your mental health, that is. I have no great words of wisdom to impart in this small space but it seems like you have enough going on without having to invoke HIV. DW

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