Dear Dr Bob:
I am constant worried 24/7. In early May this year, I was sharing a cigarette with a person who is HIV positive. About a week later, I came down with a low grade fever, chills, inability to sweat and recognize hot warm weather atmosphere.
Due date, I feel sick like I have a fever. I still have the constant chills and always feel very cold, despite warm weather. I notice hot, warmth feeling of clammy skin at the middling extremities of arms were elbow meets. I have never experienced these symptoms before and never had chills even during cold winter months of the year.
Can I have caught HIV from sharing a cigarette? We shared the same cigarette lighter and he lit my cigarette also while in my mouth.
With my doctor finding no other cause and explanation of symptoms, I am totally convinced its HIV. Is this possible? Please answer Dr Bob, more then happy to make a donation.
Your HIV risk is completely nonexistent. Your "symptoms" are not at all consistent with or worrisome for HIV. Even though I do not feel HIV testing is warranted, if you continue to perseverate on this non-exposure, get a single rapid HIV test at the three-month mark. It will undoubtedly be negative; however, it may be the most efficient and effective way for you to quell your irrational HIV fears.
As for being "totally convinced" you have HIV, please know that I am absolutely certain you did not contract HIV from this shared cigarette experience. If your doctor cannot find a physical cause for your symptoms, you should consider a psychological cause. Psychosomatic illness can produce a variety of symptoms, including those you describe.
Stop chasing a disease you do not have and begin to focus on a condition you definitely do have anxiety and irrational HIV fears.
Thanks for your donation to The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation (www.concertedeffort.org).