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Texas Guy

Negative means Negative!!!
      #34478 - 05/19/02 02:04 AM

I was a frequenter to this board almost two years ago. For all the worried well, please read this.
In Oct '99, I had a low risk exposure with a man who I found out two weeks later was poz.
About a week after my exposure, I noticed a small red flaky spot in the middle of my chest. After I found out this guy was poz, I became extremely stressed. I couldn't eat or sleep.
Over the next three months, I convinced myself that I had contracted HIV. My skin symptoms did get worse. I developed what I later found out was seborrhea on my scalp, chest, and a spot on my forehead.
I must emphasize that during these intial three months, seborrhea was my only symptom. I experienced no fever, no fatigue, no weight loss, no diarrhea, no headaches, no coughing, etc, etc.
However, I was convinced I had HIV. I finally found the courage to get tested at a local clinic in mid January '00, almost four months after that exposure.
To my surprise I was NEGATIVE!!! I couldn't believe it. But, my joy was short-lived as by the next morning I was convinced that the test was wrong. The lab probably mixed up my results with someone elses. It didn't matter that everything was computerized so the likelihood of a mixup was less than being struck by lightning.
So, I went to a private lab later that week and got tested again. The result the next day was again NEGATIVE!!
Well, I was okay with the results until April, when I developed a stomach infection which I got tested for...giardia. Well, my thoughts of HIV started again. Even though this is a common infection, especially among gay men, I was convinced again I had HIV.
So, I was back at the local clinic getting tested for HIV for the third time in three months. Again, my test was NEGATIVE!!!
For awhile I was okay with the results. However, by August, I began developing low grade fevers every day for about three weeks. I also was having unexplained body aches that would come and go.
Then in November '00 I began having the body aches a few times a week up until probably two months ago. There was no rhyme or reason to them.
I went to a doctor in Jan '01 and had tests done. All my blood work came back normal. She actually thought that perhaps my HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE was responsible for the weird aching. She told me to lose weight.
Well, up until two months ago, I didn't lose the weight. I continued with the body aches. I continued with the seborrhea on my scalp.
During the past year I have had about four colds, all with fevers. I also had a high fever about three months ago (103) for a day. My skin was itching.
Well, I was torturing myself again. I was convinced yet again that I had HIV. So, two weeks ago, I bought a home access test, figuring that this would be the third outlet for testing. I was totally convinced this time that I had HIV.
Well folks, YET AGAIN, I TESTED NEGATIVE FOR HIV!!! I am now finally convinced that I don't have it. I think that at this point, after 32 months post-exp, that four negative tests are 100% CONVINCING!!
People, please look at your symptoms and really think about them. When I really look back, I had begun to have bad dandruff six months before my Oct '99 exposure. I had NEVER had dandruff before and it was quite shocking since I have very greasy hair. I also had noticed red scaly patches on my scalp at that time that came and went. Also, the skin on my face is very greasy as is the skin on my chest. Seborrhea is common in people with oily skin. Add in my extreme stress at the time (Oct 99) with the fact that I was already developing seborrhea (Feb 99), then it's no surprise that I could develp a problem.
Also, the most telling aspect of my exposure is that I experienced no real flu-like symptoms that are the tell-tale sign of a virus in your body. People, this is a kick-ass virus and it's just got to give you at least a fever. I had none.
My advice for all of you would be to get tested at three months at by two different agencies, whether it's a local clinic, your doctor, or home access. All are extremely reliable.
Then get on with your lives. You are all too good torture yourselves so much.

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Re: Positive means Negative!!! new
      #34482 - 05/19/02 03:54 AM

The test is non-specific which means it does not react to hiv at all!

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Texas Guy

Re: Positive means Negative!!! new
      #34487 - 05/19/02 12:53 PM

I'm glad we have a leading expert in antibody testing, specifically the EIA, in here! What medical school did you go to?

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