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HIV Transmission and Education >> Am I Infected?

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Anonymous
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Worried again
      #134283 - 02/10/05 04:42 PM

I'll try to make my story brief, but please bear with me as we all know how the grips of this fear can get to us. I am a 27 year old female, married a little over a year. My husband and I have been together for almost 6 1/2 years now. The only other person I was with was my college boyfriend which was about 7 years ago.
My husband doesn't have it-he was just tested during his routine military physical, so I'm convinced I got it from my college boyfriend. I started thinking about HIV when I went through a phase when I believed I had skin cancer. I spent hours looking stuff up on line regarding my "scary" looking moles. I had two moles removed and biopsied and they came back normal. It took me some time to believe that because I continued to look at pictures of cancerous moles online and I was convinced mine were. Anyway, somehow links from skin cancer sites linked to some oral cancer site which made me go crazy looking in my mouth. I saw white on my tongue which then led to a link talking about HIV. (Isn't amazing how one thing can lead to another?!) From then on, I've been off and running with this obsession. I have been to my doctor 10 times in the last 6 weeks crying that I have HIV. She is very patient with me, but stern and says, "You do NOT have HIV." She looked at my CBC from my annual checkup in June and said, "There is absolutely no evidence of blood cell destruction." She explained that HIV is a virus and in order for it to survive it has to "eat" and "eats" blood cells and it doesn't just do it here or there, but constantly. So that made feel good for a short amount of time. Then I started wondering what exactly the numbers on the cbc were, so I had a copy sent to me. My WBC was 6,100 RBC 4.76, platelets 239; everything else was normal too. So all of that fell into the normal ranges, so I was happy with that--temporarily. I spent hours digging around looking for the last CBC results I had which was from 1997 before I was with this guy who I am convinced has HIV so I could compare the results. I finally found them and started to get worried because my previous WBC was 6,700 so it has gone down to 6,100 in the past 7 years. (Normal at most labs is 4000-10,000) My RBC back then was 4.58 so it has gone up a little, and my platelets were 234 so they have gone up slightly. I understand it's normal for things to fluctuate a little but does it seem like my WBC going down that much is ok? I have driven my husband and mother crazy with this. My mom has called the Aids hotline twice and even talked to an infectious disease doctor that specializes in HIV at a hospital while she was waiting for her surgery consult. (Bless her heart for putting up with me!) Anyway, everyone said that after 7 yrs there would be a huge drop in my WBC, RBC, and platelets if I had HIV and they would be below normal and would prompt further investigating. Plus, I have no reason to believe this guy has it-my mother saw him at the mall a few months ago with his wife and new baby. I really want to believe them, but I'm so worried about this drop in WBC. My mother showed me her past 3 CBC and it shows her WBC ranging from 5500-7000 so I guess there can be some fluctuations. I just want to get over this. My doctor has said she will give me a test if I want her too, but she's worried that I won't believe the results and/or I'll just start on something else until I fix my anxiety problems. I have been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and OCD so I know that's contributing to my issues. Part of me wants to get tested, but then the other part agrees with the doctor that it's just a cycle and I don't want to give in to testing. She knows I went from the skin cancer to Aids and I even briefly thought I had Hepatitis until she said the CBC showed normal liver functions. Pleases help. I know that all of you know what torture this can be spending all day feeling your lymph nodes, surfing the web, and overanalyzing every body sensation. To be honest, if I have it, I will be fine with that, I just could not bear the thought of giving it to my husband. My counselor thinks I have guilt issues regarding being with this other guy because I always thought I'd wait until I got married, but didn't. Do I just need to believe my doctor, the people on the hotline (what are their qualifications anyway?) and the infectious disease doctor my mom spoke to? I always think about listening to my gut feelings, but in the case of medical issues, my gut feelings can't usually be trusted. Please-any advice/ thoughts would be really appreciated.

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J-friend
Unregistered

Re: Worried again new
      #134285 - 02/10/05 05:24 PM

Well, as you stated, you are in OCD mode right now. I don't understand the whole "giving in" to testing - you say that like testing is a sign of weakness. All I can say is that if your husband of 6 1/2 years is neg., and you've only had one other partner ... well, you do the math. So, just get tested and get this issue out of your life. I find that we people with OCD (yes, I have it too) sometimes prefer to keep stressful issues in our lives so we have something to obsess about. It sounds crazy, but that's the OCD mind! So ... I'm certain (just like your doc) that you're negative ... but get thet test - NOW! You will se for yourself that you are neg. I've been just where you are, and I know your fear is REAL - I respect that. But, my friend, this is the OCD at work, it's not HIV. Trust me, OK? Just learn to watch those thoughts - kind of like a movie - but don't take them too seriously. And, the good news is that people with OCD are usually VERY intelligent and creative ... just think of all the good you can do with that energy. Go get tested, sweetie ... youre fine. :)

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