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High Anxiety: AIDS Anxiety in the Worried-Wells and Worried-Sicks, Part One

By Bob Frascino, M.D.

September 3, 2010

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I mentioned above that AIDS phobia is far more common than most folks realize. I should also mention that phobias in general are more common than most folks realize. There are literally hundreds of phobias. In a previous blog I mentioned hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia -- fear of long words. Some readers thought I was kidding. I wasn't. It really exists. Here are a few of my other favorites:

  • Arachibutyrophobia -- fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth
  • Blennophobia -- fear of slime
  • Paraskavedekatriaphobia -- fear of Friday the 13th
  • Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia -- fear of the number 666
  • Medorthophobia -- fear of an erect penis

And my personal favorite: phobophobia -- fear of phobias!

Finally, I wanted to return to AIDS phobia and mention that not all AIDS phobias are incapacitating. Some are merely annoying; others actually amusing.

For instance:

  1. Arya is locked in a vicious cycle of continual HIV testing because she fears getting infected every time she gets an HIV test.

    fear for over one year
    May 1, 2010

  2. AIDS phobias and urban legends

    Please help.. (NEEDLE STICK AT A RAVE, 2010) (URBAN LEGENDS, 2010) May 23, 2010

  3. Revenge of a disgruntled baggage handler

    Toothbrush spunk follow-up question-Will donate
    Nov 8, 2009

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See Also
High Anxiety: AIDS Anxiety in the Worried-Wells and Worried-Sicks, Part Two
Guide to Conquering the Fear, Shame and Anxiety of HIV
Trauma: Frozen Moments, Frozen Lives
More on Coping With Stress and Anxiety


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Life, Love, Sex, HIV and Other Unscheduled Events

Bob Frascino, M.D., was President and Founder of The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation. He had been an outspoken, popular expert in's "Ask the Experts" forums on safe sex and fatigue/anemia since 2000. Once a Fellow of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, and the American Academy of Pediatrics, Dr. Frascino served as Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Division of Immunology, Rheumatology, and Allergy, at Stanford University Medical Center from 1983 until 2001. He was a member of the American Academy of HIV Medicine and had also been a distinguished member of the executive boards of numerous state and regional associations.

We're inexpressibly saddened to share the news that Dr. Frascino passed away unexpectedly on Saturday, Sept. 17, 2011. Click here to read more and to share your thoughts.

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