Test reliability at 6 months
Mar 23, 2013
Dear Dr. wohl, Congrats for the wonderful job you are doing for the public I had a sexual encounter with an African prostitute last year. It was unprotected. In two weeks i had a severe sore throat, canker sores in my mouth, dysentry, joint pains, muscle pains, headache and swollen lymph nodes. Everything disappeared in two weeks except for swollen lymph nodes. My lymph nodes ( above the collar bone and under the jaw) are still swollen from that time. (Now its 9 months since exposure but nodes are still swollen, like bullets under my skin.) So my doctor asked me to do an HIV test. I had taken a 4th generation duo test at 68 days and PCR RNA qualitative test at 69 days and both were non reactive. I again took a 4th generation duo test at 90 days, ECLIA method and it was negative. But my lymph nodes are still swollen and they are rock hard. So my doctor asked me to do another test again at 6 months. i did that as well and it was non reactive again at 6 months, 4th generation duo using CMIA method. Also i did the same test from two different labs, one using ECLIa and the other Abbott architect duo assay. My doctor still insists that i must do a one year test. Im a father and responsible husband and i can't take this trauma anymore. I feel very scared and I don't think i have the ability to do one more test. I feel so scared facing the test. I dream HIV now...is there any chance that my tests would have missed anything? Is there a chance that the antibodies / antigens were not picked up by the test? I feel so worried and my life is like hell. Sir, please help me with your knowledge. My doctor insists that since i had all the symptoms of acute HIV infection, I must continue to test
Also, My test was only for M and O groups. Since the exposure was in Africa, will not testing for N and P be a problem? Im really worried and keep poking my lymph nodes since my doctor seems quite sure i have had a sharp chance of acquiring HIVi. What scares me most is yesterday my wife had an eye infection. Since this is the third time it happened, the doctor is saying this is because she has an immunity issue and her blood has to be checked. Sir we both are very scared now since i had confessed to her about my exposure. Sir please answer me to say if I need to go and get tested again or to hunt for a test that looks for N and P groups. Im asking because the woman I had sex with was from cameroon. Can tests looking for M and O pick up N and P? I humbly request you to answer me. I hope the window period in india is also 3 months.
Response from Dr. Wohl
What you may need are better doctors. Repeat HIV testing serves no purpose except to raise your anxiety and rack up expense. I suspect you are not HIV infected. Bullet sized nodes do not sound impressive to me. I am not examining you, however, and if there is real lymphadenopathy then one of these nodes should be excised for biopsy. There are many causes of swollen lymph nodes.
Eye infections are not uncommon and again, I fail to see how this indicates anything.
My recommendation is to seek out an infectious diseases expert who can assess your travel history and exposures. Again, I bet HIV will not be found.
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