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Should I ask for a test sooner?

Dec 11, 2012

Dear Dr.,

12 weeks ago I had unprotected insertive anal sex with a man of unknown status and 14 hours later started PEP. Now, 12 weeks later, I've just noticed a swollen gland in my neck and a small hives-like rash to the lower right of my navel (about 8x8 cm). I also have a runny/blocked nose. I'm supposed to be getting a follow-up test three months after completion of the four week course of PEP (so in four weeks time, and this will be the first test) but I'm wondering, with the development of these symptoms, should I go sooner?

Many thanks.

Response from Mr. Cordova

Hi there:

I do not think your exposure warranted PEP to begin with. Transmission would be unlikely to occur during a one-time incident of insertive anal sex. Your symptoms have nothing to do with HIV. Any testing done at 90 days or later can be considered conclusive. You could go in for your test now if you like. Whatever the result is now is the same result you will get in four weeks.

In health,


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