THANKS SO MUCH "THE BODY.COM"

Question

DOCTOR FIRST OF ALL I JUST WANT TO SAY THANKS SO MUCH FOR WHAT YOU GUYS DO HERE!!!! IT REALLY MEANS ALOT TO THE PEOPLE LIKE ME WHO ARE SCARED TO DEATH AND DONT KNOW WHAT TO DO.... I SENT YOU A QUESTION ABOUT THREE MONTHS AGO AND NOTICED YOU DID NOT ANSWER....PLEASE IF YOU CAN JUST ANSWER THIS LAST ONE I SHOULD BE GOOD TO GO. HOW DOSE THE FLU IN ARS DIFFER FROM A NORMAL FLU?? THE SORE THROAT I GOT LASTED FOR ALMOST THREE DAYS THEN I HAD A NIGHT OF FLU LIKE SYSTOMS THAT WHEN AWAY OVER NIGHT THE WORST WAS THE HEAD ACAE; FEVER AND EVERYTHING ELES LIFT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT. THEN CAME A BAD COLD NEXT AND I KNOW THIS WAS A COLD BECASUSE MY ROOMMATE CAUGHT IT NEXT. SO TO SOME IT ALL UP IS IT COMMON IN ARS TO HAVE A SORE THROAT FIRST FOR A FEW DAYS THEN TO HAVE THE FLU TO COME ON AND HOW COMMON IS THAT HEAD ACEC IN ARS???

Answer

Thanks for your question. We often say that Acute Retroviral Syndrome (ARS) may be accompanied by "flu like symptoms". It is not a form of flu or influenza which is primarily a virus that infects the respiratory track. The symptoms from acute HIV generally are not so much the respiratory part (cough sniffles, sneezing, which are not part of ARS), but more of the fever, sore throat, fatigue and generalized weakness. HIV, unlike flu, may cause lymph node swelling throughout the body (flu can cause swollen lands around the neck) and may have a fleeting rash. Your symptom pattern is very consistant with the flu.

Best, Joe