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Please set my mind at ease Dr. Wohl!
Jun 23, 2012

Hello Dr.,

This is probably my own paranoia but I have an enlarged lymph node in the left side of my neck. Only one and only on the one side. I used to think it was just allergies because I have bad allergies in the summer and swore I'd felt it there in the past around this time of year. Anyways I did the worst possible thing and checked symptoms on the internet and a lot of sites say swollen lymph nodes are a sign of hiv. A little medical history about me; I have never touched injection drugs and I was tested for hiv in 2010 which came back negative. I have been involved in a monogomous relationship since then and we do have unprotected sex but as I said we are in a relationship and don't sleep around with other people.

Does one swollen lymph node sound like a symptom of hiv? I've heard it is usually multiple lymph nodes. Can allergies cause swollen lymph nodes? I do believe the node has been swollen for about a month now and is non tender, fairly moveable and somewhat squishy...I've actually pressed on it and heard what sounded like a pop to me before which is kind of strange....

Anyways could you give me an opinion on what this is? I've made an appointment with my healthcare provider but was hoping for some insight beforehand.

Cheers.

Response from Dr. Wohl

A swelling of a lymph node is very common and is uncommonly caused by HIV. You seem to have no risk factors and have previously tested negative. So, HIV would not be high on my list of causes. Do have it checked by your provider. An HIV test can be done if only to reassure you.

DW



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