Help please. I'm paralyzed with fear!

Question

Hey Doc.

Please help me out I am so scared and don't know how much longer I can handle this anxiety.

I was lying in bed with my ex-boyfriend. We were both naked and I started rubbing my unprotected erect penis against his anus. I did apply some pressure and minimal penetration could of occured. He denies any penetration and from my experience if you are penetrated you will know about it! Now he is HIV positive, on HAART with an undetectable viral load for many years now. When I realised what was happening I stopped so no intercoarse actually occured.

Since then I have been noticing a few enlarged lymph nodes in certain areas. But not many.

What are my chances of being infected with HIV? Does the fact he is on HAART affect the risk?

I'm shaking so much I can hardly type.

Please please please reply.

Yours sincerely,

Panic in Glasgow!

Answer

Hello Panic in Glasgow,

Lying naked in bed with a positively charged ex-boyfriend and rubbing your stiffy without a condom against his backdoor is indeed a recipe for disaster! Luckily you resisted unprotected entry into the tunnel of love. Rubbing without penetration is called frottage and is not considered an HIV-transmission/acquisition risk. It's like a FedEx package that requires a signature for delivery. If the FedEx guy merely knocks on the door (backdoor, in your case) but no one answers, he cannot deliver the package!

That your ex is on HAART would significantly reduce HIV-transmission risk, assuming his treatment effectively reduced his HIV plasma viral load. However what is really relevant in your case is that you did not have a significant exposure risk.

Bottom line: Relax Max. You're fine.

Be well. Be safe. Stay well.

Dr. Bob