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Anonymous
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20 months of HIV stress
      #21004 - 08/18/01 12:00 AM

I can't believe all I have been through for the last 20 months. After a "low risk" encounter outside my marriage I came down with a strange illness a few days later. It was something I had never felt before, consisting of a very flushed feeling, and leading into peeling skin on my hands,
dry mouth, coated tongue, strange red spots on my skin, extreme fatique,night sweats, nail fungus, general malaise, etc. I was SURE I had been infected and would have bet anything on it. As things progressed I started to panic and tried to figure out what to do. I went for tests at 1,2,3,4,5, and 6 months. All the while I fell into a DEPRESSION needing psychiatric help in the form of Prozac, Klonopin and counseling. While my tests continued to come back NEGATIVE there was nothing I could come up with to figure out what was going on physically. With each negative test I would continue to know I would be the "outside window person". As I tried to tell myself after the 6 month test I was going to let go I could not. I was addicted to the internet and read everthing about Hiv, I called every hotline in every state. They even new my voice at the CDC, I was completely out of control. So for the next 14 months I would look for every possible indication of what could be something, are my glands swollen? What are these bumps? etc, etc. Meanwhile my marriage was falling apart and fortunately I worked on my own and could fake through what I had to do to stay employed. Well I decided 20 months is long enough, I had been putting off the inevitable for a long time another test. I just got the results 20 months of this and NEGATIVE. This has been a terrible period of stress and depression, and am hopeful I can move on. I actually feel very good now, maybe STRESS could have been a major factor, I don't know what else to think at this point.

I don't really have any words of wisdom, but hopefully those going through this will realize you can't go by symptoms, the tests are accurate, and maybe there is a lesson to be learned through this experience.



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Anonymous
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Re: 20 months of HIV stress new
      #21050 - 08/19/01 03:07 PM

Perhaps you missed the lesson and got scared and got onto those dangerous phramecutical drugs. Maybe your mind/body/spirit was trying to communicate somthing to you?



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Anonymous
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Re: 20 months of HIV stress new
      #21052 - 08/19/01 04:17 PM

The only thing his mind/body/spirit was communicating was how not to accept negative HIV tests. 20 months and now just comfortable with the fact he doesn't have it.



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Anonymous
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Re: 20 months of HIV stress new
      #21084 - 08/20/01 06:14 AM

I have indeed shared a very similar experience. In November 1998 (which makes it about 20 months also), I did something pretty stupid and had sex with sex worker, whilst being completely drunk. About 8 weeks after this experience I started to loose a large amount of weight and developed a light pink raised rash over my trunk and under arm pits. I started to get very worried about hiv, especially when i developed a chronic sore throat for 6 months without relief (despite swabs being taken by doc). I then developed unbelievably bad brain foggy headaches which would last for several hours without relief. I've had around 8 hiv antibody tests (all negative), including one a few weeks ago (first one in around 14 months). Now I have an abundance of pin point red spots on my arms and chest which the doctor says is a sign of getting old (i'm only 26). I have rang aids hotlines, spent hours at libraries and on the internet and am constantly worried. My wife to be is having our first child in 1 week, and it has all brought it back to me - especially since ultrasound readings have said it's a very small baby (only around 5 pounds). I can't quite accept the hiv test results because I keep getting weird symptoms like dry mouth (ulcers and teeth decay), dry eyes, blepharitis, shortness of breath, bacterial infections on the skin (look like warts), white coating on tongue, slow healing wounds, constant mucous, low skin sensitivity to heat/sun - get rashes and have now developed allergies to common foods - and to top it all off my white cell count has gone down from 9.8 to 5.4 (normal is 5 - 11)in 2 years. I hope I can get to where you are soon, as hiv seems to be consuming a lot of my time and thinking - I'm even using the computer at work to search for hiv related topics.





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Anonymous
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Re: 20 months of HIV stress new
      #21090 - 08/20/01 08:45 AM

You guys really need to be posting on the Am I Infected Board. This board is for those of us that actually have been confirmed with the virus. That's why it's called Living with HIV, not Living with the Fear of Having HIV.



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