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Lymph Nodes and ARS
Jun 9, 2012

I had a risky exposure recently and I am extremely worried about my lymphadenopathy. It is my understanding that symptoms (ARS) can start showing within 2 weeks after exposure to HIV. My question is specifically with regards to lymph nodes: 1. Is swelling of lymph nodes a very common symptom of ARS? Does almost everyone who is recently infected with HIV experience a swelling of lymph nodes? 2. Are all lymph nodes (neck, under jaw, under collar bone, armpit, groin, elbow, knees, back, back of head etc.) swollen/sore (lymphadenopathy)? 3. Are the lymph nodes expected to be painless or painful? 4. Is swelling in the elbow lymph nodes particularly a specific indicator of HIV infection? 5. How long do the lymph nodes stay swollen/painful during ARS? Please help me understand this. Thank you so much!

Response from Dr. Wohl

Yes, swollen lymph nodes can be a feature of acute HIV. You should get HIV tested and explain your recent exposure to the clinicians so they can direct proper testing. DW



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